The Nominees: Perhaps the most I've strayed from the Oscars' shortlist in quite some time - and for good reason: I thought Syriana was not so great, and William Hurt, Paul Giamatti, and Matt Dillon were sub-par in A History of Violence, Cinderella Man, and Crash, respectively - this category may seem like a puzzler to most. Del Toro was my way of honoring the otherwise forgotten and super fun ensemble in Sin City, Grint's stint in the fourth Potter entry was my favorite of his, Rush had a minor but typically powerful role in Munich, and Sarsgaard gave a gripping performance in the otherwise simply okay Jarhead. Oh, and it was, as stated previously, 2005 was a pretty weak year for movies.
Revisions: Gyllenhaal would obviously remain (probably one of the best supporting turns of the decade) and keep the win in this case, and I'd likely maintain del Toro's nod as well; it's a great small role, and it's during my favorite of the three vignettes in the movie. As for the other three spots, I'd offer two of them to performers in that ever-wonderful cast of Junebug -- Scott Wilson and Ben McKenzie. And the last spot would probably be snatched up by a different actor from Munich -- Ciaran Hinds, who gave a simple and classy performance in the otherwise dramatic and gut-wrenching film.
The Nominees: Again, though there are some unconventional choices (the one added bonus that comes from a weak year for prestige films - the underdogs get a chance), I'm still rather happy with this line-up. And the two performers who didn't get awards attention (Bullock and Bledel) gave unexpected and effective turns in their respective films. And though I clearly didn't notice or appreciate the greatness of the Junebug cast like I do now, at least I chose the stand-out (and future movie star) Amy Adams. As for the other two, Weisz gave arguably her career-best performance (and then seemingly disappeared) and Williams had a surprisingly seamless transition from schlocky primetime soaps to prestige drama.
Revisions: The majority of these ladies would likely stick around, if given the chance to revise. My top two -- Adams and Williams -- would stay on top, and I just can't give up on Bullock's ignored performance (particularly since she was obviously the best in the otherwise mediocre Crash). The final two slots would be taken up by Maggie Gyllenhaal as the mean-spirited sex-bomb Jude in Happy Endings and Marie-Josee Croze as the sly assassin in Munich.
Familiar Faces: The Jonathan Demme Players
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