Happy 53rd Birthday, Madonna! What's Her Most Underrated Onscreen Moment?

madonna-birthday-300.jpgYes, I already toasted Madonna's birthday yesterday in that hilarious 'Verbal Vogueing' clip you watched over and over again (RIGHT?), but it's time to make The Mother of Reinvention's 53rd anniversaire official with the Movieline treatment. Now, as a functioning human being, I understand that Madonna isn't the best actress of our generation, but I contend that she's had some under-heralded moments in film. Do you have a favorite underrated Madonna moment on the big screen?

First things first, Madonna was very good in Desperately Seeking Susan and A League of Their Own, which supports my theory that she's a fine actress as long as her costars are female. And especially if one of her costars isn't the city of Shanghai.

All that said: Madonna is honestly not bad in 1993's Body of Evidence, the shadowy, sexy, terrible Basic Instinct ripoff with Willem Dafoe, Anne Archer, and an august young thesp named Julianne Moore. Our girl Madge is generally effective! In this pivotal courtroom scene, she's poised, commanding, and believable. She loved, no doubt, this scene's resemblance to Marlene Dietrich's triumphant trial moment in Witness for the Prosecution, as Madonna is a declared superfan of the Blonde Venus.

Of course, any Truth or Dare moment is fabulous too. What's your favorite moment of underrated Madonna glory? Do you have one? Are you scared to?


  • Neo says:

    She almost fooled me with her acting chops in Abel Ferrara's "Dangerous Game."

  • Louis Virtel says:

    Hell yes.

  • joe to hell says:

    YES dangerous game! exasperating to watch that film but she WAS good.
    hello - evita? come on. you need to give her that

  • Martini Shark says:

    My favorite was when she played that role of the loose woman.
    I just cannot remember if it was her slutty missionary in "Shanghai Surpise", the whorish actress in "Dangerous Game", the ceiling tile-counting Eva Peron in "Evita", the murderous trollop in "Body of Evidence", or the skanky socialite in "Swept Away". Whichever it was pretty good (although she was playing herself.(

  • milessilverberg says:

    Grading on a curve, her short bit in Shadows and Fog was relaxed and playful. The rest of the cast seemed tense, as if they didn't know what movie they were in -- which all too often is Allen's plan from the start.

  • Jason says:

    I especially enjoy the scene in Body of Evidence where Julianne Moore slaps her in the ladies room. A GIF-able moment if ever there was one. And it's not for the big screen, but I admit to enjoying her performance as "Cut to me" Liz on Will & Grace.