Betty Gabriel, Gal Gadot and Adam Driver
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In theory, awards season is a chance to celebrate the best of the best that Hollywood has to offer. As anyone who’s ever rolled their eyes at a list of nominees could tell you, however, it never quite works out that way in practice.
Fortunately, that doesn’t mean we can’t praise those who were unjustly overlooked.
Below are some of our favorite performances of 2017 that were snubbed by the major awards – by which we mean the Oscars, the Screen Actors Guild Awards, the Golden Globes, the Indie Spirits, the BAFTAs. (We are not counting critics’ awards, festival awards, or audience awards.)
In no particular order …
Michael Stuhlbarg, Call Me By Your Name
Stuhlbarg is actually pulling off the rare and unusual trick of co-starring in three Best Picture nominees without netting a single nomination himself – he’s also in The Post and The Shape of Water. But his third-act monologue in Call Me By Your Name seems like it should be worth a nomination in itself.
Betty Gabriel, Get Out
Gabriel plays a character at war with herself – she’s both the Sunken Place and the one trapped inside the Sunken Place – and it’s to her immense credit that we see that tension all over her face, even when her expression is perfectly pleasant and placid.
Gal Gadot, Wonder Woman
Diana was an impossibly tall order. She had to be both otherworldly and down-to-earth; purely good without being totally dull; sheltered and innocent but never naïve or stupid. Gadot filled all those and imbued Diana with a warmth made her impossible not to love.
Adam Sandler, The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
Sandler’s work as an overlooked son and affectionate father in The Meyerowitz Stories is so good, it’s almost infuriating. It’s a reminder of just how excellent he is when he tries – which emphasizes just how rarely he does.
Jack Black, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle
Black is playing a teenage girl in a middle-aged man’s body, and he’s so convincing it’s easy to forget we’re not actually watching a teenage girl. Moreover, he manages to pull off that trick without ever once tipping over into caricature or mockery – even when his character is at her most obnoxious.
Chadwick Boseman, Marshall
We’ve been waiting since 2016 or perhaps since the beginning of time for Black Panther, but Chadwick Boseman managed to find time in between to portray former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in a biopic. The young Marshall is idealistic but firm and – perhaps a cinematic liberty – possessed of a charismatic sarcasm. And it helps that he has a nose for justice. – Proma Khosla
Cate Blanchett, Thor: Ragnarok
In typical Marvel fashion, Thor didn’t give its villain nearly enough to do – but Blanchett took what she got and ran with it. She delivers her lines like she’s savoring every vowel, and struts like she knows the entire world is watching. In short, she looks like she’s having the time of her life vamping it up as Hela, and we had the time of our lives watching her do it.
Luke Evans, Beauty and the Beast
Even by cartoon standards, Gaston is larger than life. Luke Evans is not. Or at least we didn’t think he was until we saw Beauty and the Beast, in which he demonstrated that – though he may not have the animated Gaston’s thick neck – he can project a swagger that’s roughly the size of a barge.
Rebecca Hall, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women
All of Professor Marston‘s most deeply felt conflicts play out across Hall’s expressive face – she’s a proudly unconventional woman who’s scared to break the rules, a brilliant thinker who goes under-appreciated in her time. On a lesser actress, those contradictions might play as inconsistencies. On Hall, they feel like messy reality.
Tiffany Haddish, Girls Trip
Awards voters rarely know what to do with a comedy, so perhaps it’s not all that surprising that Haddish wasn’t nominated. That doesn’t make it any less disappointing. She was one of the biggest breakouts of 2017, and it’s thanks to her unforgettable demonstration that we’ll never look at a grapefruit the same way again.
Jason Mitchell, Mudbound
Mudbound is an all-around acting powerhouse, and Mitchell deserves special recognition for his work as Ronsel. He’s alternately tender and tough, seething with righteous fury and weighed down with regret, and he says as much with the words he can’t say as the ones he does.
Jason Sudeikis, Colossal
In Colossal, Sudeikis took his slightly-douchey-guy-with-a-heart-of-gold schtick to a new level as the ultimate manifestation of the toxic Nice Guy. The genius of his performance lies in its subtlety – he’s never a cackling villain, just an all-too-recognizable regular dude who thinks the world owes him far more than he got.
Dafne Keen, Logan
In a film filled with dusty, hardened men, Keen was the spark of life that made it all seem worthwhile. Her ferocious intensity is what gets you to sit up, but it’s her quiet vulnerability that keeps you paying attention. Even more impressively, she conveys all of this without a single word for much of the film.
O’Shea Jackson Jr., Ingrid Goes West
Jackson first rose to fame playing his dad in Straight Outta Compton, but it was Ingrid Goes West that proved he had more than a famous name. He’s utterly winning as a boy next door with an intriguingly odd edge. That thousand-watt smile helps, too.
Florence Pugh, Lady Macbeth
If you didn’t know who Florence Pugh was before, you’re not likely to forget her after you see Lady Macbeth. Throughout the course of the film, she swings from meek terror to insolent sensuality to ice-cold cruelty – hers is a sly, slippery turn, in the best possible way.
Zac Efron, The Greatest Showman
Truth be told, The Greatest Showman is a hollow Christmas ornament of a movie. But you’d never know it from watching Efron, who elevates every scene he’s in. He’s effortlessly charming in the song-and-dance numbers, and surprisingly soulful in his romantic subplot with Zendaya.
Adam Driver, Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Driver gave one of the most indelible performances of 2017 as the conflicted Kylo Ren, adding heartbreaking nuance to the character without ever losing sight of his darker side. (And only occasionally losing track of his shirt.) It’s just a shame that the one thing the Academy disdains more than laugh-out-loud comedies is big-budget blockbusters.
John Travolta keeps Brooklyn stayin’ alive at event honoring actor
Hundreds of fans gathered outside pizzeria featured in Saturday Night Fever 41 years ago to catch glimpse of and dress like the actor
“Forty-one years after strutting down a Brooklyn street, merrily swinging a paint can to the sound of the Bee Gees Stayin Alive, an older, less lithe John Travolta returned on Tuesday, to be honored for his services to the now-trendy New York City borough.
Hundreds of people gathered outside Lennys Pizza in Bensonhurst, south Brooklyn, to glimpse Travolta, who brought the neighborhood to national and international consciousness in Saturday Night Fever.
The 1977 film saw his character Tony Manero disco dance, conduct troubling relationships with women and occasionally engage in punch-ups. In the opening scene, Travolta orders two slices of pizza at Lennys before combining them in a double decker-type situation. The pizzeria claims Saturday Night Fever fans regularly order the same.
This is a great day, New York state senator Martin Golden who represents the Bensonhurst neighborhood and has submitted a 1,070-word legislative resolution commending Travolta for putting Brooklyn both on the map and in Americas hearts told the crowd.
A great day for John Travolta, a great day for his family, and a great day for Brooklyn.
Watch these movies after you see ‘Ocean’s 8’
“After months of building anticipation, Ocean’s 8finally hit theaters Friday. Yes, it featured the stunning, talented, female-led cast you’ve heard so much about. Glad you noticed.
But Ocean’s 8 is more than the token “female remake” it has been boiled down to. Like many audience members this past weekend, I showed up for the all-star actresses, but stayed for the crime, glamor, comedy, celeb cameos, and general badassery.
So to get you through those days where you can’t make it to the theater for a rewatch, here are fourteen films that show off groups of ladies getting together to kick ass — literally or metaphorically.
Headed up by Catherine Zeta-Jones and Renee Zellweger, this jailhouse musical took home six Academy Awards, including Best Picture. It’s tough to make Richard Gere look like a third wheel, but somehow the murderesses of Cook County Jail pull it off.
Where to watch: HBO
Thelma & Louise (1991)
This road trip classic follows two women as they attempt to outrun their darks pasts by any means necessary. While neither Susan Sarandon nor Geena Davis won Best Actress for their performances, the leads’ double nomination cemented Thelma & Louise as a feminist classic.
Where to watch: Starz
Plaid skirts, football players, and drain cleaner? Color me stoked. A dark high school comedy laced with visceral teen murders, this cult classic is the adolescent destruction fantasy you didn’t know you needed. Starring Winona Ryder and the titular “Heathers.”
Where to watch: Netflix
Mamma Mia! (2008)
Meryl Streep shines amongst a cast of notoriously fabulous character actors in this romantic comedy with a pop twist. The costumes, musical numbers, and female stars glisten in an ABBA-made universe. Stay tuned for the sequel hitting theaters July 20th.
Where to watch: Netflix
Beauty Shop (2005)
Nothing feels better than a comedy that celebrates inner and outer beauty equally. Queen Latifah and the rest of her salon crew (featuring Alicia Silverstone and Andie MacDowell among others) gave us one of the most styling girl-power movies to date in this Barbershop spin-off.
Where to watch: Vudu
First Wives Club (1996)
Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler, and Diane Keaton team up in this instant classic, reuniting as long lost friends and taking down the men who have wronged them – all while donning stunning coordinated power….”
John Cusack likes what you have to say about ‘Say Anything’
“If you liked Say Anything…, the 1989 coming-of-age film about a nervous-talking high school graduate winning over his crush in the summer before college, feel free to tell star John Cusack if you see him.
Cusack appreciates it when fans of the movie give him kudos for it, partly because they tend not to quote the film or, say, mime holding up an imaginary boombox in some sad attempt to replicate the movie’s most memorable scene. They mostly just say how much they liked it.
“They seem to be very warm about it, that it means something to them, so that’s nice,” Cusack told Mashable in a phone interview to promote his upcoming Q&A about Say Anything… at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center. “For some movies, they’ll have a line that they’ll repeat to you a lot of times, but that one is more just a vibe. People seem to really still dig it.”
That’s kind of an understatement. Say Anything… didn’t set box office records, but to many Gen Xers like myself, the movie perfectly captured the ennui that often follows high school graduation. And Cusack hit the bull’s-eye in his portrayal of the quirky Lloyd Dobler, simultaneously giving him a coolness and vulnerability that appealed to both male and female audiences alike.
Cusack already had movies like Better Off Dead…, Sixteen Candles, and Eight Men Out under his belt when he made Say Anything…, but the film…”
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