Monday, February 23, 2015

AFT Awards: Best Actress in a Leading Role

This is the second category of the 8th Annual AFT Film Awards to be announced. The AFT Awards are my own personal choices for the best in film of each year and the best in television of each season. The AFT Film Awards include the traditional Oscar categories and a number of additional specific honors. Nominees are pictured in the order I’ve ranked them and drawn from a pool of approximately 156 films. Click here to see previous years of this category.

Honorable mentions:
Analeigh Tipton (Two Night Stand), Anne Hathaway (Interstellar), Anne Hathaway (Song One), Audrey Tautou (Chinese Puzzle), Cheng Pei Pei (Lilting), Claudia Bassols (Tasting Menu), Dana Ivgy (Zero Motivation), Del Herbert-Jane (52 Tuesdays), Desiree Akhavan (Appropriate Behavior), Eleanor Wyld (Frequencies), Ellen Dorrit Petersen (Blind), Emily Baldoni (Coherence), Emily Blunt (Into the Woods), Florence Loiret Caille (The Little Bedroom), Jenny Slate (Obvious Child), Katherine Waterston (Manhattan Romance), Keira Knightley (Begin Again), Leighton Meester (Life Partners), Lindsay Duncan (Le Week-End), Maggie Gyllenhaal (Frank), Mari Kitia (Brides), Marion Cotillard (Two Days, One Night), Meredith Hagner (Hits), Meron Getnet (Difret), Nelly Tagar (Zero Motivation), Quvenzhane Wallis (Annie), Tess Amorim (The Way He Looks), Tilda Cobham-Hervey (52 Tuesdays), Tizita Hagere (Difret)

Julianne Moore (Still Alice)
Noel Wells (Forev)
Anna Kendrick (Happy Christmas)
Shailene Woodley (White Bird in a Blizzard)
Rosamund Pike (Gone Girl)

The winner:
Reese Witherspoon (Wild) delivered her best performance in years, stripping away ever part of her cutesy personality that has made her so familiar and loveable and leaving a hardened but equally compelling figure in her place.

Other nominees:
Felicity Jones (The Theory of Everything) had the tough job of acting opposite someone with a showier role and still managed to deliver a heartfelt and emotional depiction of a wife eternally dedicated to her husband. Jessica Chastain (The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby) kept her character from truly disappearing, saying a great deal without uttering many words and wearing heartbreak all over her face. Elisabeth Moss (Listen Up Philip) exhibited such true creativity and individuality next to someone who couldn’t hope to acknowledge how smart she really was. Paulina Garcia (Gloria) was full of life and determination as a woman navigating love and other challenges of getting older.

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