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Top 10: Actresses I’d Watch In Anything

Thursday, 16. April 2009

Here’s another of deadra’s suggestions. I don’t think I will surprise anybody with my choices, but let’s revel in the acting glory for a bit. Next week, I’ll do the follow-up with actors.

I think the title is self-explanatory about the topic of this list, so let’s get right to it. Here are the Top 10 Actresses whose names in the credits of any movie makes me buy tickets.

[Btw, I apologise in advance for not including anybody of colour in this list. There are a hundred thousand reasons for this, most of which are not especially good. I know that. And I'm sorry.]

10. Anjelica Huston

anjelicahuston

From playing Morticia Addams to the Grand High Witch, from the Prizzis to the Tennenbaums, Anjelica Huston manages to add style, flair and just a dollop of goth to every role. She’s got a cool sense of humour and she’s interesting. Plus, she’s got one hell of an expressive face. Who wouldn’t want to watch her for two hours?

9. Kate Winslet

kate_winslet

She’s intelligent, beautiful, down to earth and has a very good hunch for movies. But even if that hunch suddenly left her one day, I’d still watch every bad movie she made, because she’s that good.

But let’s hope that her taste won’t leave and we continue to get double treats in the form of good actress in good movie.

8. Helena Bonham-Carter

helena-bonham-carter

It helps, of course, that Helena Bonham-Carter has the Tim Burton connection. But even when she’s burtonless, she’s brilliant, talented, great. And she’s not afraid to go for roles that are a bit out there. I love that about her.

7. Emma Thompson

emma_thompson

Emma Thompson can do anything – from deep social commentary to brainless RomCom. But with all her versatility comes charm and just that bit of herself that makes her recognisable. She’s great.

6. Rachel Weisz

rachel-weisz

Rachel Weisz is a bit sneaky. You tend to forget how great she is until you see the next movie she made. Then she comes from behind and hits you over the head with her awesomeness. Hard.

5. Maggie Smith

maggiesmith

The first of the English Dame Trifecta.

Maggie Smith usually does the uptight English woman thing nowadays, but just go back a little bit in her film history, and you’d be surprised. But even if she only ever did uptight English woman, it wouldn’t matter. Because she’s the Queen of Uptightness, with a very wicked sense of humour. You just got to love her.

4. Judi Dench

judidench

The second of the English Dame Trifecta.

Judi Dench sometimes seems the uptight English woman, but she never is completely – her Queen walks through puddles, her M smirks about Bond’s escapades, and her high school teacher is the villain of the movie. She must have played every possible character and she was good in all of them.

3. Helen Mirren

helen-mirren

The third of the English Dame Trifecta.

It’s always good to see Helen Mirren act. No matter what she does, she’s awesome.

2. Tilda Swinton

tilda-swinton

Tilda Swinton is one of the most interesting people around. She always chooses insane roles and gives them her own personal spin. Plus, take her and two times Rachel Weisz and you completely neutralise Keanu Reeves, which is an amazing feat.

1. Cate Blanchett

cate-blanchett

I have a huge crush on Cate Blanchett. She is beautiful, intelligent and talented, but she seems also really nice. And she’s really cool.

No matter what role, she pulls it off, entirely credible. You believe her Galadriel as much as her Bob Dylan. That’s why I will see any movie with her that I can.

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57 comments

  1. This is cool and I totally agree with your #1 choice.


    • Thanks!


    • wow i cannot believe how dead on my taste in actresses is compared to yours. excellent choices.


  2. Brilliant list! I’m sure my fascination for all these women has some sort of Freudian explanation. Oedipal issues perhaps.


    • Probably oedipal. Probably you just realise that they’re really good actresses… ;)


  3. Not bad at all! Those are really good ones! I´d add Natalie Portman!
    ViktoryiaN


    • Natalie Portman just barely didn’t make it on the list. She’d be number 11.


  4. I love your choices, especially your #1! Cate is also my absolute favorite actress, she’s stunning to watch and is so immensely talented. I’d pay to see her read a phonebook she’s so good.


    • Oh yes, I’d pay for that, too…


  5. 10 times yes. And a bonus yes on top.

    Great list :)

    (I was going to suggest Natalie Portman, too, but I watch her because I have a crush on her…that makes me biased ^^)


    • As I said above, Natalie Portman would have been my Number 11.

      And your bias … what can I say, seeing as I put Cate Blanchett at Number 1? ;)


  6. super liste!

    mir wuerde noch die asiatische seite fehlen, zB maggie cheung, gong li und zhang ziyi. also bei meiner liste ;)

    ohh und maggie gyllenhaal! und uma thurman. und isabelle huppert. und natuerlich juliette binoche <3


    • Die asiatische Seite ist bei mir eher durch die Regisseure abgedeckt als durch die Schauspieler. Wobei natürlich deine genannten Schauspielerinnen alle hervorragend sind.

      Und Maggie Gyllenhaal! Sie wär Nummer 12 auf der Lster. Uma Thurman, nicht so mein Fall – stellenweise ja, aber sie ist mir zu unbeständig in ihren Leistungen.

      Isabelle Huppert und Juliette Binoche, muss ich ehrlich gestehen, kenn ich zuwenig. Wenn ich zwei Filme von jeder gesehen hab, ist’s viel.


  7. [...] Top 10: Actors I’d Watch In Anything Thursday, 23. April 2009 After last week’s Actresses I’d Watch In Anything, here’s the promised follow-up with [...]


  8. I don’t know anything about this blog, I just came across it randomly but I’m gonna guess from your picks I haven’t read most of the text, mostly just seen the photos) that you’re a woman.. maybe in the US, not sure. Don’t know why, I just felt like guessing, haha

    btw, you made great choices!


    • I meant to type UK (like mee!) not US, lol


      • Yes, I’m a woman, but I’m not from the UK, I’m from Austria. So, you guessed 50% right. That’s pretty good. :)

        And thanks.


  9. Congratulations to your side. Very good.
    But I want you to tell, that there could be another #1, in my opinion.
    Amanda Plummer is for me the best female act ever.

    Liebe Grüsse von einem Deutschen aus Dänemark nach Österreich


    • I loved Amanda Plummer in Needful Things and Pulp Fiction but I’m afraid I haven’t seen much more movies with her. Maybe I should look into more of her filmography. :)

      Grüße zurück nach Dänemark!


  10. where in this list is keira knightley? where natalie portman?


    • Natalie Portman barely didn’t make the list. And I’m not that much of a Keira Knightley fan. That’s why.


  11. I would have put Meryl Streep in the list instead of Tilda Swinton. The more I watch her in films, the more impressed I am.

    I am a BIG Judi Dench fan and met her in Washington, DC. Very dignified, but always ready to laugh.


    • Meryl Streep is awesome, too. Very true.


  12. Oh my, what an excellent list! I agree with every single one, especially your #1-I’m also an enormous Cate Blanchett fan. I’m just so amazed by what she can do. She really gets under the skin of the character and morphs like no other. I also am a HUGE fan of Meryl’s, Emma’s & Judi’s! Excellent taste.


    • Thanks!

      Cate’s absolutely awesome. The more I see of her, the more I like her.


  13. Super choices_ although every once in a while a lesser known, not so stunningly beautiful, actress comes into my mind and I feel guilty engaging in any discourse on such things. But since I am__ I’d include Kristen Scott Thomas in a heartbeat.. and all of the women who performed in Gosford Park_ O just so seamless!! I’d have to toss in Sarah Miles for her intensity and energy and sensuality. And how could a red blooded human not have a crush on Natalie Portman? Cheers everyone.


    • I’m afraid, I don’t know Sarah Miles, so I can’t really comment on that.
      Kristen Scott Thomas and Natalie Portman, on the other hand, are awesome.


  14. All excellent choices. However…

    “…her high school teacher is the villain of the movie.” was the line that won me over. :] Notes on a Scandal is a ridiculously underrated movie. It had one of the most original scripts and best ensemble performances of the decade.


    • Yes, true, it was very good.


  15. I knew it! I’m a really big Harry Potter fan, and I was like, “Oh my gosh! I recognize Helena Bonham-Carter!” Then I said, “Bellatrix LeStrange!” And I looked up “who played Bellatrix Lestrange” and it said Helena Bonham-Carter so I was right!


    • You’re right, that’s her.


  16. You, my friend, have EXCELLENT taste. The only other actress I’d put in there is Meryl Streep. And i disagree with whoever said Kiera Knightely, but it’s your opinion, not mine. :P


    • Why, thank you. :)

      Meryl Streep is great. Keira Knightley, not so much, imo. Though she does have a pretty good taste in movies.


  17. Great List, almost perfect, almost because Vanessa Redgrave is the English Dame missing.


    • Vanessa Redgrave was never so much my thing. Though of course, she’s one of the great English Dames.


  18. Excellent list! I came here while searching mentions of Emma Thompson, just having seen her in Angels of America. I think she has a more compassionate face than anyone ever.

    Wanting to pay some attention to some gals from the darker side: Theresa Russell possesses an ominous attraction that makes me interested even if the role is bad. And Kathleen Turner is my all time favorite in her breathless awe, no matter how bad the actual movie is. Body heat is actually pretty good IMHO.

    Respectfully yours
    J. Mäkelä from Finland


    • I don’t think I know Theresa Russell – will look into her.
      And Kathleen Turner is pretty cool, that’s true. But if we’re talking good actresses mostly stuck in bad movies and/or weird roles, my heart goes out to Kathy Bates. :)


  19. i loved your list


  20. I totally agree with all your choices 100% Great picks! I’d also add Sigourney Weaver.


    • Sigourney Weaver is great, too.


  21. How is it that you do not have any African American actresses on this list?? Does that mean that there are no capable women of color that makes you excited enough that you’d watch them in anything that they are starring in?? Of course, you are entitled to your opinion, I just find it rather curious.

    I find it amazing that in this day and age, African American’s are still being excluded. It is clear to me that we are only included in things when it is severely necessary.

    Thank you for reminding me that WE do not really matter – yet YOU all have no problems taking our money!


    • I guess I deserve that, even if it’s not very politely phrased and completely disregards the apology I’ve made in advance for that fact. [I know that it doesn't make anything better but at least I'm aware of that.]

      And of course I know that there are amazingly talented women of colour in any field and I didn’t mean to say that it was impossible for a woman of colour to engage me in the same way a white woman can (because that is definitely not true).

      Unfortunately I have to admit that I don’t know that many coloured actresses – maybe you could recommend a few? [Though I know it's not your responsibility to educate me.]

      Anyway, women of colour who deserve to be on this list but who I’ve only discovered after I wrote it:
      - Yvette Nicole Brown
      - Mo’Nique
      - Gabourey Sidibe

      Women of colour who barely didn’t make this list:
      - Michelle Yeoh
      - Zhang Ziyi

      I invite any- and everybody to expand this list.


  22. If I had a nickel for every time I came to kalafudra.wordpress.com.. Superb writing!


    • If _I_ had a nickel for every time you came to my site… :P

      In any case, thanks!


  23. How about Li Gong?


    • Li Gong is pretty awesome, too.


  24. Great list! Cate is to me the obvious number 1 choice, although i am a little bias since i am aussie. Her portrayal of Bob Dylan was outstanding and i cant believe she didnt win an oscar for it.
    If it is even possible, Cate is even more memorising on stage and i am so lucky that soon i will see her in a play and maybe ask her a question after the show. What would you ask her?


    • Sounds brilliant – I’d love to see her on stage!

      And I’d probably ask her something along the lines of how she chooses her roles or maybe about her creative process, if I’d get the chance.


  25. [...] cinema and even more where I’ll watch a film at home just because they’re in it. But this and this are starts. Then I’d add Sam Rockwell, Natalie Portman, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jake [...]


  26. Pretty lady.


  27. Dead on choices! Even down to #11 Natalie Portman. And your Descriptions are golden, especially in Regard to Rachel Weisz and Cate Blanchett! Well done.


    • Thanks! Always good to get nice feedback. :)


  28. You are an idiot. Why on earth would you apologize for your taste or what you deem to be superior talent in their field? Congratulations for not including a tokem person of color.


  29. Wow. I totally agree with this list completely. though I may have changed some of their positions. I love each and every one of these beautiful ladies.


    • Thanks!
      And yes, they’re absolutely wonderful! It was hard to cut down the list to 10 people though.



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