An increasing number of screenplays feature female characters with more to offer than a concern about love and men. As a result, 2008 provided some excellent choices for quality acting by two-X chromosome performers. Forget Sex and the City. Look instead to Frozen River, Vicki Cristina Barcelona, Happy-Go-Lucky, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day and other similar films featuring females in the leads. Congratulations to these actresses, who are Reel Life Wisdom's selections for the top ten female acting performances from the films of 2008.
1) Penelope Cruz in Vicki Cristina Barcelona - wild emotions untethered as
Cruz's Maria Elena redefines what love's got to do with it.
2) Kate Winslet in Revolutionary Road - The audience feels April's hopes and
dreams slip away through the eyes and movements of a spectacular Winslet.
3) Sally Hawkins in Happy-Go-Lucky - An average movie made interesting by two
excellent performances, the best by Sally Hawkins' ever-peppy Poppy.
4) Melissa Leo in Frozen River - Leo's riveting performance helps us all
understand the tough side of decision-making when money's in short supply.
5) Marisa Tomei in The Wrestler - Tomei's pleasure girl Cassidy demonstrates
the strained uncertainty of relationships in the hard stripper world.
6) Felicity Huffman in Phoebe in Wonderland - Sundance goers felt the great
pain of Huffman's mother uncovering her sweet daughter's disturbing illness.
7) Kate Blanchett in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - Blanchett owns
each age of Daisy from teen to a twinkle-eyed senior on her deathbed.
8) Amy Adams in Mrs. Pettigrew Lives for a Day - Adams puts some substance
behind the air found in the chaotic Delysia's head.
9) Penelope Cruz in Elegy - It's been a good year for Cruz, whose character
Consuela illustrates why smart and beautiful can be so disarming.
sophistication with sleaze looks easy in Swinton's effortless performance.
10) Tilda Swinton in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - Combining
The Top 10 Movies of 2008
The 10 Best Performances by an Actor in 2008