Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"Actress In A Supporting Role" 1980


And the Academy selected:
  • Eileen Brennan in Private Benjamin
  • Eva Le Gallienne in Resurrection
  • Cathy Moriarty in Raging Bull
  • Diana Scarwid in Inside Moves
  • Mary Steenburgen in Melvin and Howard

My Ranking:

5. Diana Scarwid as Louise in Inside Moves

Diana Scarwid plays Louise, the bar girl who lusts after a depressed handicapped man in Inside Moves. The film is extremely strange to begin with and Scarwid is stuck with an all too limited role. Diana Scarwid's own daffy acting style makes the character even more strange and unsustainable, especially during the scenes where she is supposed to be romantic and sexy - truly awful! Her wide eyed looks into the camera are the stuff Razzies are made of. People have gotten nominated for doing less, but some of those aren't as peculiar as this one.

4. Mary Steenburgen as Linda Dumaur in Melvin and Howard

Mary Steenburgen became the darling of the category in 1980, for her funny and strange performance as Linda Dumaur, the wife of Melvin. She does a good job playing on the quirky aspects of the character, the charm and quirk that encapsulates the character. However, just like Diana Scarwid, there is a large amount of ickiness to be found within. I like the small, normal moments of the performance not the wild dancing scenes, and Steenburgen can only deliver for some of the time.

3. Eileen Brennan as Captain Doreen Lewis in Private Benjamin

It may be a tad overrated, but Eileen Brennan is still great as her tough Captain Doreen Lewis to Goldie Hawn's Private Benjamin. She is a bitter, sado general who causes trouble for Hawn until Goldie finally lashes back at her and begins torturing her, including putting blue dye in her shower head. It's pure camp and shtick, but Brennan is at least funny and entertaining. It may not be a terrific performance, but at least it's entertaining.

2. Cathy Moriarty as Vicki LaMotta in Raging Bull

Cathy Moriarty broke into the show business because she looked alot like the real Vicki LaMotta and this ended up being her big break and her most known work, and in my opinion, her best work. She finds the perfect mix between the naive young girl and sassy bombastic wife that she would later become. It's not necessarily a big performance, but her impact on the film overall is something that cannot be ignored. She is simply terrific showing everything one could imagine with the character.

1. Eva Le Gallienne as Grandma Pearl in Resurrection

There is something fulfilling and haunting about Eva Le Gallienne's performance as Peal, the wise and heartwarming grandma of Ellen Burstyn. She appears in the film as a guide, but turns out being it's soul, showing a realistic love of not just a grandmother, but a person. She drifts through the film, blowing around how much talent she is investing into the character. It's a nearly amazing performance that lasts long after the film is over.

Honorable Omissions: Betsy Palmer in "Friday The 13th" and Beverly D'Angelo in "Coal Miner's Daughter".


dinasztie said...

Well a shocking pick and not in a good way. I would probably go with Eileen.

Louis Morgan said...

From what I have seen I would go with Moriarty, although I have seen few of these.

Jamie said...

Yes, kind of surprised by this pick myself. I haven't seen the film in many years, but loved it and don't even remember her in it. She didn't register with me.

I agree that Brennan's performance, although fun, is overrated. Of the nominees, I'd go with Moriarty, although I think Beverly D'Angelo from Coal Miner's Daughter was the best of the year.

DistinguishedFlyer said...

Surprised you ranked Steenburgen so low - I'd have gone with either her or Moriarty. Even more surprised at your mentioning Palmer!

Sage Slowdive said...

Betsy Palmer deserved this Oscar without being asked twice!

joe burns said...

I like Steenburgen enough, I think she's fun and charming, but the movie doesn't explain it enough.

joe burns said...

Not seen the others though.

Derek Bowman said...

I haven't seen any of these performances, but LOVE the mention of Betsy Palmer! She's absolute camp perfection in Friday the 13th.

Dazzling Aura said...

in my opinion, Moriarty's nomination is disgusting. forgive me but i don't really understand her inclusion in the race. she was stiff and almost robotic. however, i haven't seen Resurrection fully but had seen some scenes with Le Gallienne and i kinda agree with you. I really like Brennan, i almost compare her to Goldberg's Ghost.

hey deanie said...

Agreed with Dazzling Aura on Moriarty – a repulsive performance. The two women you ranked last are my picks. Love Jonathan Demme, love Steenburgen. And Diana Scarwid is wonderful.

Sage Slowdive said...

Glad you have a loving opinion.

Christopher Meade said...

I actually love Diana Scarwid's performance in Inside Moves but I also see your perspective. This is an entertaining blog and I love every single facet of it.