Thursday, June 3, 2010

1981 Best Actress Rankings

5. Meryl Streep, The French Lieutenant's Woman - 2 Stars

Accent smackscent. Just wasn't feeling this one at all Meryl. Kudos to anyone who can last through a full viewing.

4. Katherine Hepburn, On Golden Pond - 3 Stars

Hepburn is easy to belove and bemoan. I find her wins in 1967 and 1981 to be incredibly undeserved considering the competition. She is perfectly fine in On Golden Pond. And she has some very moving moments in it. But the film has aged pretty badly and it's impact has as well.

3. Susan Sarandon, Atlantic City - 4 Stars

Sarandon gave one of her sexiest and most underrated performances in the very underrated Atlantic City. She was campaigned as supporting actress but was placed in lead where she belongs.

2. Diane Keaton, Reds - 4 1/2 Stars

Keaton gives her career best performance in the overlong Reds. Her scene with Beatty at the train station and at the end are incredibly well done.

1. Marsha Mason, Only When I Laugh - 5 Stars

Is anyone more underappreciated than Marsha Mason? Made about 10 films between 1973-1983 and earned Best Actress noms for 4 of them. And yet many film goers do not remember her today.

The former Mrs. Neil Simon was never better than here as the recovering alcoholic actress Georgia Hines. Some have accused Mason of being "one note". Well I'll take her "one note" any day. She always commands attention when she is on the screen and perfectly mixes strength, vulnerability, and humor in her performances. She did that to perfection here and should have taken home that Oscar as a result.


  1. I'm going to do this year on my blog next, so I shouldn't reveal too much :]

    I have to say I love Marsha Mason in many things! Too bad she's not remembered...

  2. Thanks Sage! You and Fritz inspired me to start my own blog about the Best Actress races because I thought you did such a great job on your own! I'm still learning how to do this. I anxiously await all of your analysis on the races Sages and find myself agreeing with you a lot!

  3. Thanks, Adam! It's great when new bloggers begin these projects!

  4. I couldn't agree more. This is a brilliant performance from Marsha, and I've seen this movie about 20 times!