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Looking Over the Overlooked.

January 8, 2010

Here are my five top supporting actor performances overlooked by those Academy people. In no particular order.

1. John Goodman as Walter Sobchak in The Big Lebowski.

James Coburn walked away with the award in 1998, which while being a very strong performance pales when compared Goodman’s work in Lebowski. Goodman’s performance is reminiscent of his work in The Big Easy cut with a side of Raising Arizona.

2. Alfred Molina as Rahad Jackson, the drug dealer with taste of banana hammocks and Night Ranger

Criminally meet underrated in the form of the great Alfred Molina. Granted, his appearance in Boogie Nights is a scant ten minutes, but it’s a sparking highlight in a film riddled with dazzling performances. Also, watching him dance in around in his chonies singing Jesse’s Girl is such a treat.

3. Danny Glover as Henry Sherman in The Royal Tenenbaums

Glover’s performance is welcome departure from his best known role, that of neurotic cop and family man of Roger Murtaugh and cheeky to boot. It was so unlike anything I had seen him in before and this performance made quite the impression on me. Also, when Royal yells, “I know you, asshole.” previously heard in Witness – a nod to Glover’s work in that film – it’s just another little nod that we’re seeing something new and interesting from one of our finest actors. It’s subtle work here – we’re not talking jaw meet scenery like is the case for Tommy Lee Jones in The Fugitive – which tends to be overlooked come award time.

4. Raul Julia as defense attorney Alejandro ‘Sandy’ Stern in Presumed Innocent

Perhaps this is just the heartache talking, but I have never gotten over the loss of the incomparable Raul Julia. Even in crap films he was radiant and there just wasn’t enough time for him. He embodied all the best acting qualities of Morgan Freeman, Don Cheadle, Andy Garcia and Luiz Guzman. All in one fucking brilliant actor. Pakula’s film has all the earmarks of a paint-by-numbers thriller (dump bin best selling novel, A list star) Julia was able to create a memorable performance out of NOTHING. That was his super power. Creating acting alchemy moment by moment. I recently watched Presumed Innocent again and through many of his scenes I was a bit teary. I miss his contributions and it’s just so wrong that he was never rewarded for his tremendous talents in this life.

5. Donald Sutherland as Mr. X in JFK

Holy gravitas, Batman. Easily the best 20 minutes of this bloated Oliver Stone picture. Sutherland nails it and thankfully, Costner gets the hell out of his way!

Honorable Mentions

Don Cheadle – Traffic (Though I was very pleased with Benecio’s win)

Sam Elliott – The Contender

Hector Elizondo – The Princess Diaries. The chemistry between his character and Julie Andrews was so charming.

Chris Tucker – The Fifth Element

Robert Forrester – Jackie Brown (nominated and should have won the Oscar)

Next up… The Women. That’s actually taking a lot more time to pair down the list to five women.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Hank permalink
    January 8, 2010 11:01 am

    Jackie Brown got robbed on every level.

  2. Kisha permalink
    January 8, 2010 3:04 pm

    John Goodman could get the panties. Oh yes.

  3. Charlie permalink
    January 8, 2010 3:39 pm

    Don Cheadle is the only thing I even vaguely remember from Traffic.

  4. Charlie permalink
    January 8, 2010 3:42 pm

    Sean Penn in Carlito’s Way. Nominated only I think.

    Looking forward to your choice of women!

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