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marinelife's avatar

What do you think is an overlooked great movie acting performance?

Asked by marinelife (62177points) March 8th, 2010

I saw Forrest Gump this week for the first time. I was blown away by Gary Sinese’s performance as Lt. Dan Taylor, which I thought stole the movie.

I was surprised to find that he was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor award, but did not win.

Are there other outstanding acting performances that were overlooked by the Academy that you can think of?

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66 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

Anything by Bruce Campbell.

janbb's avatar

I’m sure there are many more that will come to mind later, but one that stands out is Tim Blake Nelson’s role in O, Brother Where Art Thou. He was a joy to watch!

squidcake's avatar

Well, all I can think of are overlooked movies in general, where everyone’s performance was brilliant, i.e. The Fountain.

Lightlyseared's avatar

Will Smith in “Six Degrees of Separation”

Eddie Murphy in “Dreamgirls” (It’s hard to believe that it is the same person that brought us Norbit et al)

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Wilson in “Castaway” was a well-rounded character who was overlooked by the academy :(

janbb's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille But I heard he had a ball playing the part.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@janbb-Privately,he said he was kicked around alot…

janbb's avatar

Oh, that kinda deflates my image of him.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

-I think he was just full of hot air with an over-inflated self-image.

noyesa's avatar

@Cruiser Hail to the king, baby

Cruiser's avatar

@noyesa “Don’t make me use my stuff on ya, baby!”

cockswain's avatar

I don’t know if he could be counted as overlooked, but Phillip Seymour Hoffman is one of the greatest actors of our time. I put him up there with Nicholson and Brando.

dalepetrie's avatar

I was honestly stunned at Tom Cruise’s performance in Magnolia….I can’t think of a single other movie where I really took him all that seriously, and as a human being he seems like a whack job to me, but somehow he actually made me forget that he was Tom Cruise when I watched that movie.

I’ve also been particularly impressed by some of Bill Murray’s serious/dramatic roles…not just Lost in Translation or Broken Flowers, but going all the way back to Mad Dog and Glory.

And I have to say, I’m usually not impressed with “pretty boys”, but in just about everything he’s in, Brad Pitt does an outstanding job.

As none of these really seems to be considered a “great actor”, these would be the “surprises”, and as such, the most “underrated” in my opinion.

drClaw's avatar

John Vernon as Curtis Mooney in Killer Klowns from Outer Space

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

Djimon Hounsou in Blood Diamond. It was a busy year for movies in 2006, and Leo was also in The Departed, so I think this movie (and Djimon’s acting) was largely overlooked. Too bad, because it is an excellent movie.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@janbb and @lucillelucillelucille You guys are awful! :-)

mcbealer's avatar

Will Smith in Seven Pounds
Dakota Fanning in i am Sam
Jennifer Aniston in The Good Girl

will add more later when I’m in front of my desktop.

josie's avatar

Val Kilmer – Tombstone
Paul Newman – The Verdict

davidbetterman's avatar

Jonny Depp and Leonardo Dicrapio in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape.

ucme's avatar

Marty Balsam in Psycho.An all too brief but brilliant performance.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Peter Boyle and Gene Hackman in “Young Frankenstein.” :-)

syzygy2600's avatar

Corey Haim in Lucas. One of the most overlooked films of the 1980’s and a great performance by him.

Kokoro's avatar

Anthony Perkins in Psycho… should have at least been nominated.

thriftymaid's avatar

Sophie Marceau in Fire Light.

Vunessuh's avatar

Ellen Burstyn in Requiem for a Dream.
She was nominated for lead actress and lost.
Same with Felicity Huffman for Transamerica. She was nominated for lead actress and lost against Reese Witherspoon. wtf.

Also, Vera Farmiga in Down to the Bone who was never nominated.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Dr_Dredd -That was an excellent movie! :))

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille My favorite scene was the “monstrous” Peter Boyle lying in bed at the end, reading the Wall Street Journal. :-)

ucme's avatar

“Putting on the ritz.”

davidbetterman's avatar

@Dr_Dredd Errrr, I don’t think Gene Hackman was in “Young Frankenstein.” :-)

janbb's avatar

She probably means Gene Wilder.

Aethelwine's avatar

@davidbetterman Gene Hackman

Parker Posie in Best In Show (actually, the entire cast….I love this movie)

ucme's avatar

Gene Hackman was the blind guy

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@davidbetterman I definitely do mean Gene Hackman. Twas a tiny part, but he was very funny. He plays the blind guy. :-)

(edited: Ack! @ucme beat me to it!)

davidbetterman's avatar

@Dr_Dredd Apologies doc…It was so long ago I forgot that both Genes were in it, Hackman and Wilder!

Vunessuh's avatar

@jonsblond Fuck yeah. Best in Show was amazing. Same with Drop Dead Gorgeous. I think we’ve talked about them before. :)

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@davidbetterman This makes me want to go watch it again…

Who’s bringing the popcorn?

davidbetterman's avatar

@Dr_Dredd I just made some. But I am watching 2012 instead! Hope you like Olive Oil instead of butter!

Aethelwine's avatar

@davidbetterman I just watched 2012 this weekend. That movie makes The Day After Tomorrow believable. it is so terrible, but funny terrible ;)

KatawaGrey's avatar

Jacky Ido as Marcel in Inglorious Basterds was just fabulous. In his way, he brought so much heart and spirit to the character even though he was in the movie for maybe 20 minutes.

@Vunessuh: She didn’t get the Oscar, but Felicity Huffman did get the Golden Globe for Transamerica but she totally deserved the Oscar as well.

Vunessuh's avatar

@KatawaGrey Yeah, I saw when she got the Golden Globe and I thought for sure she would win the Oscar. Only time the Oscars really pissed me off.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Dr_Dredd -Madeline Kahn!The first time they made Looooove! LMAO!

dalepetrie's avatar

Best in Show was amazing, but I think Christopher Guest’s earlier movie, Waiting for Guffman was WAY funnier.

davidbetterman's avatar

@jonsblond Just finished it. WOW. Way better than the Hurt Locker!

DeanV's avatar

@dalepetrie If we’re talking Christopher Guest, how can you leave out This Is Spinal Tap?

KatawaGrey's avatar

@dalepetrie: The only time I’ve seen Waiting for Guffman was when I was in the hospital and it made me feel better than the morphine. :)

dalepetrie's avatar

@dverhey – Well, Spinal Tap goes without saying so I didn’t

JeffVader's avatar

Bruce Campbell…. in every masterful performace he’s blessed the world with! All hail Bruce!!!
http://www.bruce-campbell.com/

Vunessuh's avatar

I forgot one.
Not a huge fan, but Christian Bale was brilliant in The Machinist.

drClaw's avatar

I love all the Bruce Campbell answers! If I could be anyone else for a day it would be him.

dalepetrie's avatar

@Vunessuh – Christian Bale has been brilliant in almost everything he’s done, from American Psycho to The Prestige.

Another one I forgot is Adam Sandler, one wouldn’t think he had films like Punch Drunk Love and Reign Over Me in him, but both were impressive dramatic turns for a guy best known for his bizarre humor.

Vunessuh's avatar

@dalepetrie He was recognized for American Psycho. Not so much for The Machinist.

dalepetrie's avatar

@Vunessuh – true, wasn’t trying to disparage your answer, just pointing out that whether the role was widely hailed (Dark Knight) or almost unheard of (The Machinist), he’s consistently shown himself to be a truly amazing and versatile actor. What he did for The Machinist takes the kind of commitment to craft that maybe only about 1 in 10 million people have in them.

Vunessuh's avatar

@dalepetrie Yes, it was the dedication to the role that was admirable. I liked him as a child in Empire of the Sun as well. Not a huge fan of his work now though. He’s been so-so in my opinion since The Machinist.

dalepetrie's avatar

@Vunessuh – I’ve only seen 3 of the films he’s done since the Machinist (Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and The Prestige), and though he didn’t have to commit quite as much to those roles as he did with the Machinist, I thought all 3 were exceptional films and I couldn’t imagine anyone else in his roles. But I will say that looking at the list of the OTHER movies he’s made since the Machinist, there seems to be a reason why those are the only 3 I’ve seen. I’m wondering if we should call this the Nicholas Cage syndrome? This happens when you’re a great actor, you take roles in all these brilliant indie films, then Hollywood throws a ton of money at you to become a swinging dick action star, so you take a bunch of crap roles and laugh all the way to the bank.

Vunessuh's avatar

@dalepetrie You’re spot on. That is exactly what happens. Nicholas Cage Syndrome. Bahahahaha. That’s brilliant. There does indeed come a time for many actors where they start caring more about the money rather than the films they choose to put their names on. I think that’s why I like indie movies so much and actors like Laura Linney who continue to work on them. She’s relatively famous, has had many Golden Globe and Oscar nominations along with winning an Emmy, but still continues to take indie film roles all the time because for her it is more so about the script and not the paycheck. That is more admirable than anything.

Brian1946's avatar

@jonsblond

“I just watched 2012 this weekend. That movie makes The Day After Tomorrow believable. it is so terrible, but funny terrible ;)”

I also saw 2012 and I basically agree.
The movie completely overlooked the global aftermath of a Yellowstone super volcanic eruption.

dalepetrie's avatar

@Vunessuh – Oh yeah, I know who Laura Linney is. If you haven’t already seen it, you need to see “The Savages” with her and Phillip Seymore Hoffman (another actor who is amazing in just about everything he does). I’m sure you’d love it.

janbb's avatar

@dalepetrie Agreed. The Savages was great!

dalepetrie's avatar

Cool, good show…how about another Hoffman flick, have you seen Happiness? Another overlooked classic.

Vunessuh's avatar

@dalepetrie Philip Seymour Hoffman was awesome in that movie. I see most of his stuff. Same with Linney. As well as anything with Helena Bonham Carter. I definitely think she’s an underrated actress.

mcbealer's avatar

Adam Sandler in Punch Drunk Love
Adam Sandler in Spanglish
Hugh Grant in About a Boy
Julia Roberts in Notting Hill
Abigail Breslin in Little Miss Sunshine
Kate Winslet in The Holiday
Rinko Kikuchi in Babel

gggritso's avatar

@mcbealer One more for Rinko Kikuchi, but for “The Brothers Bloom”. She was awesome in that.

mcbealer's avatar

@gggritso ~ thanks, I’ve added it to my Netflix queue :)

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