Best Supporting Actor 2000

1998 through 2007

Best Supporting Actor 2000

Jeff Bridges - The Contender
0
No votes
Willem Dafoe - Shadow of the Vampire
10
31%
Benicio del Toro - Traffic
14
44%
Albert Finney - Erin Brockovich
5
16%
Joaquin Phoenix - Gladiator
3
9%
 
Total votes: 32

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby Sabin » Thu Jul 05, 2012 11:26 pm

Greg wrote
I haven't seen it in a while, so I am somewhat vague about what his character does; but, what about The Last Picture Show?

That's his best nominated performance, but I still wouldn't rank it alongside his best work. He's quite good and I believe I voted for him in the 1971 thread, but I don't recall. If I did, it was because I knew what was coming up and Jeff Bridges deserves an Oscar.

ksrymy wrote
See, I consider her a lot like Viola Davis in The Help. Both actresses resort to crying when all else fails. And while, yes, crying was inevitable in both roles, I didn't see the need for their entire roles to be one giant sobfest. You can easily give an effective performance without crying. Unnecessary crying in film tries to bring emotion that isn't there. Michelle Williams could have sobbed her entire way through the behind-the-scenes parts of My Week with Marilyn, but she gave a good performance...I may have been a bit soapbox-y in saying Mo'Nique gives a one-note performance, but her role is nothing special. I feel though they gave it to her for the "Look! A standup comedian who made Fat Gurlz didn't do something terrible in the year's favorite sob story." Gabourey Sidibe was much more effective in a role that required almost constant tears, but she overcame that to give a fantastic performance.

What I find confusing about this statement is that it implies that it's the actor's choice to "resort" to crying. When an actor cries on screen, it's a marriage between the written character arc, the performer's strengths, and what the director tells them to do. I really don't think that Viola Davis looked at the script and said "This is a perfect opportunity for me to cry." I think it just made sense for her. I know that you're not saying that Viola Davis always does that but that is interesting because for years beforehand, Viola Davis did the opposite. She was mostly known for taking on thankless supporting roles devoid of that kind of emotional payoff.

W/r/t Monique, I actually think she's the one who survived Precious and not Gabourey Sidibe, who admittedly is good in a performance that is absolutely hobbled by Lee Daniels' over-directing. Armond White has an excellent essay he wrote a ways back about roles that win African-Americans Oscars and how they essentially always play victims or monsters. Nothing really in between. I think Mo'Nique is very good in Precious. I'm not sure she's quite good enough to warrant a nomination because in much of the film she is fairly one note...and then we get to the penultimate scene in the film and Ho...lee...cow. On one level, yes, it's a brilliantly acted scene. On another level, after enduring an hour-forty of miserablist exploitation, suddenly we are granted a portal into this woman's head...and it's fascinating! All of her rationalizations are placed out before us, and suddenly the film becomes a nuanced, interesting place to be. And then credits. It's not just that she has an arc, it's that she has one that the filmmakers had no idea what to do with.

For more than this reason, Mo'Nique is really the only reason to see the film, and I would say opposite actually to your assertions that they were just glad that she wasn't in a terrible movie, not simply because I think Precious is worse than your usual Mo'Nique film. If that was the case, then shouldn't Jim Carrey have an Oscar by now? Just as with Octavia Spencer and Jamie Foxx (hmm...), the question of whether or not this actor truly is an Oscar-worthy actor doesn't seem to enter the minds of the voters. They seem to just be taken by her work in the film, so much so that her much-maligned conduct during the awards stretch didn't seem to matter.

I was Team Farmiga all the way.

The Original BJ wrote
Except in tech categories, I don't understand why Gladiator was taken seriously as an awards candidate above-the-line.

Yeah, those of us who were here at the time of the awards had the same opinion going into the race. I forget who first started to voice murmurs that Gladiator was probably gonna make it into the race, but it seemed inconceivable. And then it happened. Ultimately, there was nothing else they could align around. Not the Asian alternative. Not Steven Soderbergh's timely narcotics panorama. I recall for a bit that Philip Kaufman's Quills was highly anticipated as a sure-fire nominee at one point. I'm pretty sure I predicted Crouching Tiger... on Oscar night, but clearly Gladiator was the movie that Hollywood decided they were most proud of that night, which makes a certain degree of sense.
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby ksrymy » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:53 pm

Bog wrote:
ksrymy wrote: I hate Gladiator. I'm the only man in the world who does.


Kudos to coming right in here to our beloved board, being the exact opposite of shy, and somewhat taking charge of this endeavor from Magilla, I think you've done a commendable job. There's been times where your thoughts confuse me and times where your thoughts make me have to literally do a double take...honestly both in agreement and disagreement.

But when you say things like this it makes me sure you don't pay very close attention to the exclusive board you've found and joined and seemingly immersed yourself as an integral part. You do realize most (maybe all...OG?) of us here are males and exactly all of us have to at least have considered using the word "hate" with regard to Gladiator being Oscar immortalized.


Thank you, Bog.

I take a lot of what I put here from other notes I've written before on the films.

Also, I don't have very many like-minded friends when it comes to movies so the fact that the majority of my social circle consists of guys who like guy movies with guy stars who do manly things is the basis for that. I only wrote that note down because I transcribed it from a previous record.

My hyperbole was just that and not meant to be taken literally. If I've offended you, I apologize. I really do still read a lot of topics you have talked about and there's no way I could ever read everything you all have ever posted. I cherish your opinions and all.

It's just that I find absolutely nothing decent about that film. I've literally dodged a punch from a drunk acquaintance when I said Crouching Tiger was leagues better than Gladiator.
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby Bog » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:40 pm

ksrymy wrote: I hate Gladiator. I'm the only man in the world who does.


Kudos to coming right in here to our beloved board, being the exact opposite of shy, and somewhat taking charge of this endeavor from Magilla, I think you've done a commendable job. There's been times where your thoughts confuse me and times where your thoughts make me have to literally do a double take...honestly both in agreement and disagreement.

But when you say things like this it makes me sure you don't pay very close attention to the exclusive board you've found and joined and seemingly immersed yourself as an integral part. You do realize most (maybe all...OG?) of us here are males and exactly all of us have to at least have considered using the word "hate" with regard to Gladiator being Oscar immortalized.

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby Greg » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:27 pm

Sabin wrote:Jeff Bridges is one of the best actors who has never been nominated for one of his best roles. Honestly, who considers anything he’s been nominated for among his great works?


I haven't seen it in a while, so I am somewhat vague about what his character does; but, what about The Last Picture Show?
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby ksrymy » Thu Jul 05, 2012 5:19 pm

The Original BJ wrote:I don't think you're going to be able to convince fans of Mo'Nique's Precious work that it's the best example of a performance that doesn't have layers.


I guess I should have focused more on the poor screenplay (remember it beat Up in the Air somehow?). Mo'Nique does what she can with the role though. I'll give her that credit. I also see the same thing for The Help. The weak screenplay takes forefront.
"Men get to be a mixture of the charming mannerisms of the women they have known." - F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby FilmFan720 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 4:53 pm

For all of the talk of 1999 being one of the great years of cinema, 2000 in many ways seems to have just as many films that I truly adore, and this category shows off that abundance of riches. In addition to the already mentioned Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Billy Crudup, Morgan Freeman and Robert Downey Jr., I will add in Tobey Maguire in Wonder Boys, Fred Willard in Best in Show, Tim Blake Nelson in O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Samuel L. Jackson in Unbreakable and Aaron Eckhart in Erin Brockovich.

Of the nominees, Joaquin Phoenix is probably the weak link here. He makes a formidable enough villain, but the film casts him in such a one-dimensional way that he really isn't able to escape from all the sniveling.

If you have to pick a supporting actor from The Contender, Jeff Bridges is by far the better choice. Gary Oldman's eel-like Senator is too over-the-top, a scenery chewing turn if I have ever seen one. I spent the whole film asking myself who in their right mind would ever vote for this man? Jeff Bridges gives a real nice turn in the film, using his charm in a different way than usual, and his scenes with Christian Slater are priceless.

Albert Finney is great in Erin Brockovich...sometimes it is a real delight to watch a great actor have fun with a role which may not stretch him but plays into his persona perfectly. That is what he does in this film.

But the final vote is between Benicio del Toro and Willem Dafoe. del Toro's work becomes stronger each time I revisit Traffic, as his heart and soul become the pulse that keeps that film going. Still, Dafoe's performance is so honest yet broad at the same time and I can't ignore it here. Dafoe is an actor who isn't always given the most interesting films to work in, and his isn't one of his best, but he brings so much to the character that his performance alone carries the film.


1. Willem Dafoe, Shadow of the Vampire
2. Fred Willard, Best in Show
3. Benicio del Toro, Traffic
4. Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Almost Famous
5. Tobey Maguire, Wonder Boys
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby The Original BJ » Thu Jul 05, 2012 4:41 pm

ksrymy, I feel like your overall point is something that merits discussion -- I can think of performances I love that aren't especially deep, especially in support (Jean Hagen in Singin' in the Rain, Joe E. Brown in Some Like It Hot, among others).

But some of your examples seem more along the lines of "I just didn't like that performance." Which is fine, but I don't think you're going to be able to convince fans of Mo'Nique's Precious work that it's the best example of a performance that doesn't have layers. (And honestly, even your reasoning for why she won -- she was a comedian who'd starred in crappy movies and this time wasn't terrible -- seems to seriously overlook the tremendous critical raves her performance received.) Again, you don't have to like the work (or Octavia Spencer's, or Joe Pesci's) but I think it's not quite the same as saying the Academy isn't always concerned with depth in the supporting categories because they went with Jack Palance in City Slickers.

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby ksrymy » Thu Jul 05, 2012 2:36 pm

flipp525 wrote:I consider Mo'Nique's final scene in Precious to be something of a master class in acting.


See, I consider her a lot like Viola Davis in The Help. Both actresses resort to crying when all else fails. And while, yes, crying was inevitable in both roles, I didn't see the need for their entire roles to be one giant sobfest. You can easily give an effective performance without crying. Unnecessary crying in film tries to bring emotion that isn't there. Michelle Williams could have sobbed her entire way through the behind-the-scenes parts of My Week with Marilyn, but she gave a good performance.

FilmFan720 wrote:Also, does a supporting turn have to have great depth to it? I can think of a lot of wonderful supporting performances that don't really have an arc that I would gladly award...after all, isn't that the idea behind a supporting performance?


I agree though. The award was made for character actors and when someone like Vanessa Redgrave comes along in Julia and gives us one of the greatest-ever screen performances with huge range of depth and whatnot it is a magnificent thing to witness. Charles Coburn in The More the Merrier, Clifton Webb's supporting nominations, and Sydney Greenstreet's Maltese Falcon work are all wonderful character actor performances that I would have no hesitation to vote for. Even George Sanders' Oscar-winning turn as Addison DeWitt wasn't too terribly deep, but it was still a formidable performance. More recent (bad) examples would be Tommy Lee Jones' and Joe Pesci's wins. Sam Gerrard is a cop who only plays determined through the whole film until the very end and Joe Pesci plays Joe Pesci the whole time. The Academy felt they were wonderful though. Same with Cuba Gooding, Jr. Obviously the Academy isn't too preoccupied with depth. Octavia Spencer earned her Oscar for shitting in a pie for Christ's sake.

I may have been a bit soapbox-y in saying Mo'Nique gives a one-note performance, but her role is nothing special. I feel though they gave it to her for the "Look! A standup comedian who made Fat Gurlz didn't do something terrible in the year's favorite sob story." Gabourey Sidibe was much more effective in a role that required almost constant tears, but she overcame that to give a fantastic performance.
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby FilmFan720 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:58 pm

flipp525 wrote:
ksrymy wrote:Mo'Nique blubbered her entire way through Precious and won.

Um, hardly. I consider Mo'Nique's final scene in Precious to be something of a master class in acting. And she certainly blew away all the lead actress contenders nominated that year. Your list of criteria for what makes a successful supporting performance feels a bit facile to me.


Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of Mo'Nique's performance there, but even I agree that there was more than one-depth to that character.

Also, does a supporting turn have to have great depth to it? I can think of a lot of wonderful supporting performances that don't really have an arc that I would gladly award...after all, isn't that the idea behind a supporting performance?
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby flipp525 » Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:42 pm

ksrymy wrote:Mo'Nique blubbered her entire way through Precious and won.

Um, hardly. I consider Mo'Nique's final scene in Precious to be something of a master class in acting. And she certainly blew away all the lead actress contenders nominated that year. Your list of criteria for what makes a successful supporting performance feels a bit facile to me.
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby Big Magilla » Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:51 am

I see no reason to rock the boat this year. I went with Del Toro who is perfectly fien in Traffic. Dafoe would have been an exceptable choice, though it would have been nice to see Finney finally win one.

I agree with most tha Phoenicxs nomination should have bene for Quills, but I dont see it as a win. My fifth slot goes to Tobey Maguire in Wonder Boys.

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby Sabin » Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:26 am

I was a little surprised that the groundswell of support for Benicio Del Toro in Traffic carried him over a lifetime achievement award for Albert Finney. Not because he isn’t good in Traffic, but rather because he’s given no big emotional scenes, although then again neither is Finney. In retrospect, I shouldn’t be surprised. Benicio Del Toro for years was an incredibly idiosyncratic actor known for making very off-kilter choices and here he is in Traffic playing by the roles and giving a very dignified, charismatic, yet vaguely by-the-books performance. I think he was better a couple years later in 21 Grams (a much worse film) and before in any number of films, but his win certainly isn’t a crime considering that the actor he took the award from isn’t doing anything special either. And because, y'know, he's Benicio Del Toro. He's an incredible actor who is still quite good in Traffic.

Albert Finney is perfectly fine in Erin Brockovich and provides a suitable foil for Julia Roberts, but he’s hardly Oscar-worthy.

Jeff Bridges is one of the best actors who has never been nominated for one of his best roles. Honestly, who considers anything he’s been nominated for among his great works? Certainly, The Contender doesn’t fall into the category. The advance word on Rod Lurie’s film was that Julia Roberts had better watch her back because Joan Allen finally has a leading role worth her talents. Yeesh! What a simplistic pile of bullshit! If someone was to warrant a nomination, it was probably Gary Oldman who turned a blandly evil character into someone somewhat interesting. Jeff Bridges does nothing special here at all. Joaquin Phoenix does quite a bit that is special with the role of Commodus much as he did with Quills, and I’m sure also The Yards which I still haven’t seen. I was a very big fan of his work in Quills, more so than Gladiator. Ridley Scott’s film is incredibly dumb, and at the center of it is an actor taking his role very, very seriously. I can’t give Joaquin Phoenix the award for villainy this comic book-ish, but he was a very strange choice for this role and I can’t see a slew of other actors utterly mucking it up.

I’m going with Willem DaFoe in Shadow of the Vampire, a lovely idea for a movie not brilliantly executed but still rife with charms. Willem DaFoe is such a monumentally strange character actor, the heir to Walken weirdness. This film and role launched a decade of very strange roles, and I have no qualms about giving one of our great character actors my award for a film that allows him to cut loose.

Joaquin Phoenix’s win at the Board didn’t surprise me, and then the critic’s all lined up behind Del Toro and DaFoe which seemed right. And when Golden Globes vetted this entire lineup, Bridges’ nom caught me by surprise because I thought he along with the film was utterly done. And when the Screen Actor’s Guild pushed Del Toro for Lead, who took his place but Gary Oldman for the same film. So weird. I would have thought that Gary Lewis for Billy Elliot or Philip Seymour Hoffman for Almost Famous would have factored in more.


Best Supporting Actor
1. Jack Black, High Fidelity
2. Willem DaFoe, Shadow of the Vampire
3. Philip Seymour Hoffman, Almost Famous
4. Billy Crudup, Almost Famous
5. Robert Downey, Jr., Wonder Boys
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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby mlrg » Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:21 am

Benicio del Toro - Traffic

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Re: Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby The Original BJ » Thu Jul 05, 2012 1:46 am

This race pretty much narrowed down to these five VERY quickly -- even the mainstream alts seemed way out on the sidelines. Of those options, I'd cite Philip Seymour Hoffman's hilarious Almost Famous work, Morgan Freeman in a nice change-of-pace black comic role in Nurse Betty, and Bruce Greenwood's terrific take on JFK in Thirteen Days.

Except in tech categories, I don't understand why Gladiator was taken seriously as an awards candidate above-the-line. And that's basically how I feel about Joaquin Phoenix's nomination -- his emperor was a sniveling villain without much nuance or even much dominance of the screen. I agree that he gave a more interesting performance in Quills this year.

The Contender is a lurid soap masquerading as a serious political thriller, but the performances across the board were solid. Jeff Bridges was quite enjoyable and funny in his role, though I can't say I bought him as the President of the United States for even a second. I can't say I thought Gary Oldman was necessarily robbed, either, as his slimy Republican was about on the same level as Bridges's president -- entertaining but not exactly a deep characterization.

Albert Finney's curmudgeonly boss is a pleasing sounding board to Julia Roberts's Erin Brockovich, and the two make a memorable team in the film. But, to me, Brockovich is Julia's movie all the way -- her star turn blows everything else off the screen -- meaning that I don't think Finney gets the kind of scene-stealing supporting role one usually needs to win here. And as I didn't vote for Roberts in Best Actress, it wouldn't seem right to pick Finney in his race.

Shadow of the Vampire is one of those movies I'd like to give another try, especially now that I've actually seen Nosferatu, which I hadn't back in 2000. Because, at the time, the newer film felt mostly like a one-joke movie -- the actor PLAYING a vampire IS a vampire! Isn't that HYSTERICAL? But I did think Willem Dafoe was the real deal, in a role that fits him like a glove. He's a little bit creepy, amusing in a completely self-aware manner, and very eccentric -- all qualities that have characterized many of Dafoe's performances over the years. The actor is clearly having a field day here, and I found him a genuine standout even though I didn't care for the movie that surrounded him. He's my runner-up.

But I think the Academy made the right choice by going with Benicio del Toro's cool, charismatic Traffic work. The cast, across the board, is very good in Traffic, but del Toro is tops, playing his character with an enigmatic reserve that leaves the audience consistently intrigued by how his brutish but moral cop will handle the corrupt situation in which he finds himself. I've seen Traffic numerous times since its release, and every time I marvel at how expressive del Toro can be with just his face and his eyes -- I love his wordless final shot at the baseball field. It's not the kind of performance I expected to become a juggernaut -- especially given that most of it is in Spanish! -- but I'm very glad it did, and I see no reason to take his trophy away from him in hindsight.

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Best Supporting Actor 2000

Postby ksrymy » Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:12 am

A new millennium begins.

The Contender gave us a wonderful supporting performance this year; however, it was Gary Oldman's that should have been cited instead of Bridges' lackluster work.

I hate Gladiator. I'm the only man in the world who does. It's overrated as all get out. Joaquin Phoenix gives the only good performance of the film but his work in Quills was better this year. He's intimidating and looks very much like a Roman bust moreso than all the other characters.

These last three are nominees I would keep.

Albert Finney is great in here in the latter part of his career. He makes Roberts tolerable and grounds the film in humanity moreso than Roberts' being a single mother does.

I like Benicio del Toro in Traffic, but I couldn't give you a reason why. He's great as Javier Rodriguez. I especially enjoy the scene with the American couple he has toward the beginning. He's the right nominee to pick from this film too.

But my choice is Willem Dafoe. I absolutely love Shadow of the Vampire and I think John Malkovich also gives a great, even campy, performance as F.W. Murnau. Dafoe's turn here may seem a stunt and nothing deep, but I rule out depth when it comes to supporting turns. They're there to support. If there is a deep, nice supporting turn it's a nice bonus to the role, but I don't feel ground-shattering, earth-rollicking emotion and depth is essential to supporting awards. Just look at Octavia Spencer this last year. All you have to do is be sassy and you win. Mo'Nique blubbered her entire way through Precious and won. Walter Brennan's undeserved win for Kentucky also comes to mind. No depth, just very superficial acting. So obviously the supporting awards aren't meant for lead-like acting.

Dafoe is wonderful though. I would not credit his nomination to the makeup he had. That would be the equivalent of denying John Hurt his 1980 nomination. Dafoe's "golden chalices" speech is haunting. His body movements and facial tics are perfect. We get to see another side of a character who only ever seemed mechanial and one-sided (even though the original Nosferatu is one of my favorite films).

Looking back, there was no chance at his win. The only major award he won was the LAFCC (the Satellite Awards are cute too I guess). I'll throw my vote his way.

My picks
___________________
1) Willem Dafoe - Shadow of the Vampire
2) Gary Oldman - The Contender
3) Benicio del Toro - Traffic
4) Albert Finney - Erin Brockovich
5) Tobey Maguire - Wonder Boys

6) Philip Seymour Hoffman - Almost Famous
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