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Reference quality performances

Old 04-10-08, 12:44 PM
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Reference quality performances

After watching "There Will Be Blood" yesterday, I just couldn't stop thinking about great performances like Lewis' in TWBB. He was so good; it really wasn't like acting anymore. He became the character. I don't think TWBB was the best film of 2007 (that would go to either "No Country For Old Men" or "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford"), but included the best performance of 2007.

So what other actors put on "reference quality" performances?

Here's a few I can think of:

Daniel Day-Lewis - There Will Be Blood
Malcolm McDowell - A Clockwork Orange
Max Schreck - Nosferatu
Javier Bardem - No Country For Old Men
Robert De Niro - Taxi Driver
Old 04-10-08, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by nateman
Max Schreck - Nosferatu
Since you threw in silent movies, gotta go for Maria Falconetti in Joan/Arc.
Old 04-10-08, 01:34 PM
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Heath Ledger - Brokeback Mountain
James Cagney - White Heat
William Holden - Sunset Boulevard
Old 04-10-08, 02:10 PM
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Christian Bale - The Machinist
Old 04-10-08, 02:12 PM
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Brett Favre - There's Something About Mary

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Old 04-10-08, 02:20 PM
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Denzel Washington - The Hurricane
Old 04-10-08, 02:24 PM
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Agreed on De Niro, Bardem, Day-Lewis, and McDowell. Some others:

-Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield in Pulp Fiction
-Dennis Hopper as Frank Booth in Blue Velvet
-Jack Nicholson as Randle P. McMurphy in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (or his perf as Jake Gittes in Chinatown)
-Marlon Brando as Vito Corleone in The Godfather
-Henry Fonda as Frank in Once Upon a Time in the West
-Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs (perhaps the most obvious recent example)
-Jeff Bridges as Jeff "The Dude" Lebowski" in The Big Lebowski
-John Goodman as Walter Sobchak in The Big Lebowski
-Kathy Bates as Annie Wilkes in Misery
-Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in Goodfellas
-Clint Eastwood as Inspector Harry Callahan in Dirty Harry
-Bruce Willis as Lt. John McClane in Die Hard
-Alan Rickman as Hans Gruber in Die Hard

Oh, and if it's ever made, I'll add Danny Trejo as Machete to this list. He should just be billed as "Machete" from now on.
Old 04-10-08, 03:17 PM
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Isn't Olivier's Hamlet a reference?
Old 04-12-08, 02:49 AM
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Haven't seen it, but Forest Whitaker in Last King of Scotland.
Saw a behind the scenes look at it, and read an Empire article. Apparently he was in character throughout the entire filming of the movie. On and Off the set.
Old 04-12-08, 03:14 AM
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Peter O'Toole in Lawrence of Arabia
Mel Brooks in Spaceballs
Old 04-12-08, 03:17 AM
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Jimmy Stewart
Pick any flick he was in.
Old 04-12-08, 10:34 AM
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Anyone in Glengarry Glen Ross.
Old 04-12-08, 11:38 AM
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David Thewlis in Naked. Always blown away.
Old 04-12-08, 11:57 AM
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Spencer Tracy and Clark Gable in 'Boom Town'...

Ian Hunter in 'Strange Cargo'...

Rutger Hauer in 'Blade Runner'...

Christian Bale in 'Harsh Times'...

Clint Eastwood in 'Unforgiven'...

Tatsuya Nakadai in 'Hara Kiri' or 'The Sword Of Doom'... on anything he was in really...

Denzel Washington in 'Man On Fire' or 'Training Day'...

Robert Duvall in 'The Apostle'...

Nick Nolte in 'The Good Thief'...

Cary Grant in 'Only Angels Have Wings'...

Robert Ryan in 'Bad Day At Black Rock'... or anything he did really...

Terence Stamp in 'The Limey'...

Morgan Freeman in 'Street Smart'...

Philip Baker Hall in 'Hard Eight'... or anything he's in...

John C Reilly in 'Hard Eight'...

Takashi Shimura in 'Ikiru'...

Burt Lancaster in 'Lawman'...

Russel Crowe in 'Romper Stomper' or 'Master And Commander'... hell just about anything he's in...

Gary Sinise in 'Of Mice And Men'...

John Malkovich in 'Of Mice And Men'...

that's a start... a short one...
Old 04-12-08, 02:43 PM
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Everyone in "Zodiac"

Emile Hirsch "Into the Wild"

Christian Bale "American Psycho" and "Rescue Dawn"

Leonardo DiCaprio "The Departed"

Brad Pitt "Seven", "Fight Club" and "The Assassination of Jesse James..."

Jim Carrey "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"

Clive Owen "Children of Men"

Edward Norton "25th Hour", "Fight Club" and "American History X"
Old 04-12-08, 02:57 PM
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George C. Scott - Patton
Old 04-12-08, 08:05 PM
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"Rowdy" Roddy Piper - They Live
Old 04-12-08, 08:19 PM
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Five off the top of my head

Amy Adams: Junebug
Alec Baldwin: Miami Blues
Joan Fontaine: Rebecca
Alastair Sim: Green For Danger
David Thewlis: Naked
Old 04-12-08, 08:53 PM
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Charlize Theron - Monster
Robert DeNiro - The Godfather Part II
Old 04-13-08, 01:03 AM
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No one's mentioned...

Daniel Day Lewis - Gangs of New York -???

He got screwed by the Oscar voters. One of the best performances I've ever seen. (Especially when you hear him talk in real life - talk about BECOMING a character!)

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