Jennifer Lawrence's Best Actress Oscar win is more than a career milestone. During awards season, Lawrence got dinged by people like me for speaking her mind and not being more politic during the campaigning process. She didn't really listen, and, guess what, it didn't really matter. more »
If you're both a movie fan and a consummate statistician, it's easy to love and appreciate the Oscars for shoehorning the majority of film history into a manageable grading rubric. I'm an Oscar apologist myself, and I still have one bone to pick with the Academy -- and all award-spewing organizations: the unnecessary reliance on gender-based categories. Is it not more thrilling to pit all actors against each other? Is there such an objective difference between Jeff Bridges and Sandra Bullock? Meryl Streep and Robert Downey Jr.? "Actor" is a gender-neutral term, and I think we'd all better off -- and better entertained -- without the meaningless siphoning. Thus, I'm stacking up the best performances of 2011 without categorical regard for gender or role size. It's a winner-take-all affair, and this winner definitely wants it all. Here's my top 10:
Charlize Theron's Best Actress Oscar win in 2003 was hardly unexpected. Roger Ebert had declared her performance as Aileen Wuornos in Monster "one of the greatest performances in the history of the cinema," and she cleaned up at the Golden Globes and Independent Spirit Awards. But there's no denying that Theron's win followed in a certain Oscar tradition, and in this funny clip with MTV, Theron acknowledges it as such. Let's compare notes with the Young Adult star and come up with our own recipes for Oscar victories in the big four acting categories.