Sunday, October 16, 2005

Kate Elizabeth Winslet

"At this point in the countdown I think it wise to remind readers of what this list is and what this list is not. This is not a list of my favorite actresses of all time. Nor is it a list of my favorite contemporary actresses of my filmgoing life. For the record and in no particular order that would be..." read the rest...

Previous Film Experience Notes on the English Rose
'All The Kings Men'
Kate Loves Morgan
2004 Bronze Medal: Best Actress
2004 Oscar Race: Best Actress
2004 Oscar Review: Best Dressed
Enigma review
2001 Oscar Review: Best Dressed
2001 Oscar Race: Supporting Actress
2001 Gold Medal: Supporting Actress
Iris review
Quills review
1999 Holy Smoke Gold Medal


Anonymous said...

Holy crap. Not even Top 2?

[Insert mass crying fest]


adam k. said...

Nathaniel, your tribute to Kate Winslet was lovely. I must say, I was shocked and had no idea what to expect when you said you had a "serious" complaint about her acting. I laughed and sighed when it turned out just that she is not in every film ever made. That is a pity indeed.
What I love about Winslet is not just that she plays the bohemian libertines, but that she can show so well the transition from repression to freedom. You can tell in her characters that finding that freedom is not easy. And she shows the journey so brilliantly.
I must say, now I have no clue whether Kidman or Clarkson will be first. I just watched Kidman in Moulin Rouge! again, and boy, I'd forgotten the brilliance... I think she deserves it.

Anonymous said...

Actually, I kinda take back my reaction above, because I saw the entry number and reacted before I read your soaring tribute. Way to keep our Winslet-obsessions happy whilst simultaneously celebrating your own. Respect.


Anonymous said...

Beautiful tribute to the great Kate!

I'd love to see Clarkson #1...that would be an inspired and different choice!

But if it's Kidman I could hardly argue (even though I'm not her biggest fan).

Anonymous said...

Excellent!!! Excellent!!!



John T said...

Winslet not at number one-I'm shocked, shocked, shocked (but can't wait to see who wins in the battle between Kidman and Clarkson)!

Anonymous said...

i am glad she is this high, but she deserves to br number two at the least, it was very nice what you said about her list would be like this:

3. Pat. Clarkson
2. Kate Winslet
1. Nicole Kidman

but i will say that now Kate is cleared, Kidman has this one in the bag..or she better..

also just real quick Nat, thank you so much for not putting Hilary Swank on this, i dont think i would be able to handle it if you did, when someone like Kate, or Julianne, or Michelle dont even have one and actors like Nicole dont have 2???? the actors i said all should have 2 by now before someone like her.


Javier Aldabalde said...

Great tribute, yes.
Also, the pictures (especially Samantha Morton's) are amazing.

I got Kate's placement wrong, though.

Kidman vs. Clarkson it is.

Anonymous said...

Holy moly! I tough she deserved #1, but now that she won't be I'd be really happy if Clarkson gets the Top Honors.

P.S. I loved what you said about her.

Anonymous said...

I'm pulling for Clarkson- talk about someone who has done consistently great work with pretty much no appreciation, aside from these last 2-ish years. Her presence, no matter the size of the role, automatically makes a film better.

I don't think the same could be said about Kidman (Bewitched, anyone? The Interpreter?), and I am a little concerned that she's suffering a little from a Julianne Moore-esque cerca 2001 slump right now.

She was great in The Hours and Moulin Rouge, don't get me wrong, but I don't think anything she's done since then can compare- not Dogville (though she was good), not Cold Mountain, not Birth.

But hey, that's just moi.

adam k. said...

The thing about Kidman, I think, is that her greatest roles have been very tied up in the specifics of her life at the time. I think she's the kind of actress who has her "moment" (and hey, it lasted like 2 years), but will not remain consistently great throught the rest of her life/career. She will most likely have several hints of brilliance still (like Birth and Dogville) but I think 2001/2 was her peak. I think Moulin was the role when she was finally most "herself" and Hours the role when she was finally, really "someone else" in a major way. And the Cruise split, that magic actress age of 34-35, etc. probably had a lot to do with that. I just don't see her as a Meryl Streep or a Kate Winslet who just remain consistently great from first film to last. She's not one of those. But these five years have been magic.

Anonymous said...

Kidman has been giving incredible/brilliant performances since the 80's in "Bangcock Hilton" and "Vietnam". "Billy Bathgate", "To Die For", "The Portrait of a Lady", "Eyes Wide Shut", "Moulin Rouge!', "The Others", "Birthday Girl", "The Hours", "The Humain Stain", "The Interpreter" and her two greatest performances to date just last year in "Dogville" and "Birth".

Films like Birthday Girl and Birth are proof enough that her presence automatically makes a film better. She's not just an actress of the moment, she's an actress who has been giving us some incredible performances for nearly 20 years now. And this decade (so far) belongs to her.

Anonymous said...

Nicole Kidman deserves the number one spot, no doubt. Why? She's international, she truly is a star, and I mean a diva like Garbo, etc...Take a look at her movies: Moulin Rouge! (great perfomance), The Others (she IS the film), Dogville (I hate Von Trier films, but she makes me like this movie), BIRTH (her finest perfomance to date, that scene at the!), THE HOURS (superb and moving). And now WONG KAR-WAI...
I love Patricia Clarkson, but Nicole Kidman is THE actress of the new millennium.

Javier Aldabalde said...

Um... 2001/2 might have been her peak as a star so far but her performance in "Dogville" is miraculous and I would rank that in the same list as

Björk - Dancer in the Dark
Ellen Burstyn - Requiem for a Dream
Julianne Moore - Far From Heaven
Uma Thurman - Kill Bill
Naomi Watts - Mulholland Drive

when counting the definitive performances of the decade so far (and yes, I'm aware there are no ACTORS there, but hey, they're not nearly as interesting ;-)

And this comes from someone who has Blanchett, Winslet and Pfeiffer as his favorite contemporary performers.

Anonymous said...

Adam K.- couldn't have said it better myself.

adam k. said...

anonymous, who are you? have you posted before?
oh, that's probably you praising Clarkson.

Nice to agree with someone on Kidman. Really, I just can't see her aging well as an actress at this point. Maybe it's her seeming insistence on only taking lead roles (Blanchett and Winslet, for instance, still do great in supporting parts). Maybe it's how she comes off as cold and stiff (my biggest complaint about her)... in practically everything except Moulin Rouge and The Hours, she just seems so cold and stiff... though she clearly knows this and many of her best roles exploit it (The Others, Birth, Dogville, To Die For, etc.). But she's just not a "warm" presence at all (except in Moulin, where she let the ice crack wide open... god bless her... I got the feeling that she actually NEEDED to, for her sanity's sake)... so yeah, I just don't see her career working as well post-40 and 50 (her unwillingness to age doesn't help... no more botox, Nicole, you were stiff enough already!).
That said, though, I find her so fascinating as an actress and star... I could talk about her for hours... clearly. I've babbled too much here already. Maybe it's cause she ascended just as my love of cinema ascended (like Nat and Pfeiffer), but if you (anybody!) ever wanna talk Kidman...

Anonymous said...

Adam K! While I don't agree with you on the some of your stuff, I'm the same with then Ascention of Films = Ascention of Kidman.

Since I've really started to seek out good movies and really watch them it was around 1999 and, well, Kidman OWNED those years.

I do think however, that she will last. Her desire to make FILMS is purely evident with the fact that she has made Birth, Dogville and now Fur and Wong-Kar Wai's The Lady From Shanghai. She's clearly not making this films for hosannas (the same can be said about Winslet I think - except maybe Finding Neverland).

I think in the next few years she will slow down and then she will become the actress that she will be for the next however many years.

And while you have a problem with Kidman only taking lead roles, can you really see anybody else taking the roles in Birth or Dogville or Moulin Rouge! or The Others? I cannot imagine anyone else.

Plus, it should be said that Kidman was CLEARLY supporting in The Hours but the Miramax machine took advantage of that year's situation.


On to Winslet.

Interesting to see her in number 3, although I had a slight inkling that she may not be number 2 purely because while her situation may not be as dire as Julianne Moore, she hasn't had the string of great films and great roles that she had throughout the 90s. But for every Finding Neverland or Life of David Gale there's an Eternal Sunshine or a Quills. Brilliant actress is our Winslet.

Clarkson at #2 would be wonderful, Clarkson at #1 would be a shocker on the level of... I dunno, what was a big major upset at the Oscars lately?



adam k. said...

The Pianist for best adapted screenplay?

You're right, The Hours really was more of a supporting role. But I don't consider the lead campaign a fraud either. More of a really big gamble. But ego-wise, taking a supporting role as Virginia Woolf isn't like taking just any supporting role. I guess I think it's sort of an ego/insecurity thing with her, but I know that's armchair psychology and is neither here nor there about her skills as an actress... just an opinion of mine.

What I think is a real issue with Kidman, though, is that her "cold" persona limits her range. It's not really her fault, but it limits her range nonetheless. I guess I just feel like the excels mainly at being the tall, beautiful center of attention, and mining her cold persona for dramatic purposes. But she's not an accent genius like Streep, Blanchett, or (I think) Winslet, not such a great character actress (my opinon, at least), not terriffic with comedy (at least not when she's without an auteur to guide her), and not great at fading into the background and letting others share the spotlight. These reasons are why I don't think she'll remain great as she must adjust to older age.

Anonymous said...

As for Kidman being "cold" in Dogville, maybe you actually need to watch that movie again. Grace is like some naive, Angelic presence. She literally emanates Christ-like warmth (a deliberate thing on Von Triers part I suspect), innocence and naivete that makes the actions of the townspeople even more appalingly shocking. The coldness only comes to fruition in the last 10 minutes, when she takes her revenge. For most of the film, she's almost like an arthouse version of Mary Poppins, refusing to succumb to cynicism and see the worst in people.

If you don't buy the warmth of Grace, there's no way you can buy the conceit of the movie. We wouldn't give a damn if she was just some frigid cow getting her just desserts.

She's not playing it like The Others or The Hours. Warmth is is seriously key component of that performance, and she pulls it off brilliantly.


Anonymous said...

oh fuck adam k. i dont even love kidman that much and he was praising her njot long ago i believe now he hates her??? seems like a person who just gets pissed when his favorite actor doesnt get number one, fuck you.

Anonymous said...

oh i agree with the post above mine, he was prasing her at the top of this thread and now he is just bitchin on how she will not last and how she does botox??? are you even the same person adam k? make your mind up on if you like her or not.

Anonymous said...

I do see that she is cold in her films, but that is what she does best, and i do not think she does botox, i do agree that adam is just kinda mad that Cate or Kate are not number 1 like kidman very well could be, im not hating on you adam, but i just really disagree with a lot of what you said.


kids. play nice in the sandbox. we dont want this blog to get nasty like so many blogs...

Anonymous said...

LMAO i noticed this too!!

he said very nice things about her in his first and 2nd posts and then he just starting hating on her! what a change of heart....


Anonymous said...


I thought you were a TRUE Nicole Kidman fan?!?!?!? some of the things you said really hurt, she wont age well, she does botox, she is cold, i know you dont care, but you disappointed me...

Anonymous said...

the last post was by me, Dustin, by the way, in case anyone wants to know. :)

adam k. said...

OK, time to play defense/damage control:

A) I DO think she deserves #1 on the list (I have said this before)

B) I DO think she is a great actress, just not a GREAT (in all caps) actress.

C) I thought she was terriffic in Dogville, and without her innate coldness THE ENDING WOULD NOT HAVE WORKED. It was as if she were showing her true colors, along with everyone else. Streep, Blanchett or Winslet COULD NOT have done it as convincingly... I don't think I would've bought it. And for the record, a lot of that film had her basically being the "tall, beautiful center of attention"... like an angel perhaps? Or a devil? Anyway, great performance.

D) My personal opinion, based on seeing her movies, her many many interviews, reading articles about her, etc. is that Nicole the person is rather insecure, and perhaps has some "I need to be a star" ego issues. Which is fine. Many great actors are that way.

E) Yes, I suppose I do have kind of a love/hate relationship with Nicole. I do think she's great. I want her career to continue to soar. But I just have a feeling that it won't last for decades and decades. And that makes me sad, cause I like her.

F) Sorry about the botox comment, perhaps that was a low blow. Don't believe it, then, if you don't want to... but I'm not saying it would make her a bad person or anything. I only "went there" because I like Nicole and worry for her, in much the same way I worry for Lindsay Lohan. Too much fame = bad!

I'm done posting on the Winslet board about Kidman. I'm sure I will post more on the Kidman board, though... oy, such controversy...

~Adam K.

adam k. said...

I just wanted to post one more comment here, so the Winslet board would have 30 comments to go with her 30 years.
Love ya, Kate! In 30 more years, you will have more oscar noms than Meryl Streep.

p.s. Stop smoking, it's bad for you.

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