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Sunday, May 31, 2009

It's Here- Supporting Actress Smackdown 1992

To regular followers of the blog, you'll notice my plethora of 1992 viewings over the past several weeks. Now, head on over to Stinkylulu's site and check out how other movie fans and I graded the performances....

Judy Davis, Husbands and Wives
Joan Plowright, Enchanted April
Vanessa Redgrave, Howards End
Miranda Richardson, Damage
Marisa Tomei, My Cousin Vinny

I'm very glad to participate in this Smackdown, as 1992 was an awakening year for me in my taste for movies and the Oscars. The 1992 ceremonies (held in 1993) were the first Oscars I can remember watching. As a 12-year-old at the time, I had seen few movies aside from Aladdin that were nominated, but I loved the spirit of competition present in the ceremony. By the next year, I was already watching religiously and had persuaded my parents to let me see the R-rated Schindler's List before the ceremony. A lifetime love (and obsession) began.

Now to the Supporting Actress race. It was definitely a shock when Marisa Tomei won, and there were even rumors of an error in reading her name. What do I think happen? Well, I think Joan Plowright and Vanessa Redgrave appealed to much of the same constituency and split the voters. Miranda Richardson, I think, was never really in the hunt because her movie was probably off-putting to many viewers. So we come to Judy Davis and Marisa Tomei. Judy Davis was terrific, respected, and should have won, BUT she was in a Woody Allen movie in the year of the Soon-Yi scandal. Perhaps the voters weren't quite ready to reward a performance in an Allen film, no matter the level of performance. So they were left with Tomei. A young, breakfout star. Check. A funny and scene-stealing performance. Check. Looks good while accepting the Oscar. Check. A strange choice at the time, but now that we have seen her performances in In the Bedroom, Before the Devil Knows You're Dead, and The Wrestler, it seems the Academy has vindicated itself. As you'll see at the smackdown, it's not my choice but its certainly not a bad one.

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