Best Supporting Actress 2016

Vote for the best nominated Supporting Actress performance

Viola Davis - Fences
Naomie Harris - Moonlight
Nicole Kidman - Lion
Octavia Spencer - Hidden Figures
Michelle Williams - Manchester by the Sea
Total votes: 19

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Re: Best Supporting Actress 2016

Postby danfrank » Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:41 pm

I voted for Williams here because that one scene is one of the most powerful I've seen in quite some time. The performance also gets points for being an incredibly complicated dance between two actors/characters rather than just a big monologue.

I didn't mind Davis winning, however, as I am not one of her detractors. Though I'm often put off by actors whose emotions are too big or come off as histrionic, there's something about Viola Davis that feels authentic to me, something deeply visceral. In any case she taps into my own emotions in a way that does not feel manipulative. To me that's good acting and good art. I will say, though, that she's reached her limit of snot-running-down-her-nose scenes. It was effective and tolerable in Doubt, but on the verge of being too much in Fences (I know, some would say way beyond the verge). Any further snotty scenes will be seen as just gimmicky, regardless of whether that's just what happens whenever Viola cries. Keep the Kleenex close by and do as many takes as is needed for the snot to run dry. I think I speak for many others when I say I've reached my snot max.

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Re: Best Supporting Actress 2016

Postby The Original BJ » Tue Mar 07, 2017 3:21 pm

My fringe alternate: Riley Keough in American Honey, the year's most memorable villain.

Spencer was dry and funny as usual, but the part isn't much of a stretch beyond her typical wheelhouse.

Kidman showed a warmer side than we generally see from the often chilly actress, and then delivered one knockout monologue. I was quite happy to see her back on the awards circuit, even for less adventurous fare than the movies that house her greatest performances.

Harris's role is a bit on the cliche side, but the actress brings so much dynamism to the part she elevates it beyond the routine. I think she's the clear standout of the Moonlight cast, managing to create a fully cohesive character through three distinct periods of her life.

Williams's nomination also rests mostly on the strength of one scene, but it's the clear emotional high point of the movie, and wouldn't have worked without her raw honesty. And it's not as if she isn't effective in the rest of her part as well -- in fact, her more relaxed and fun moments in the flashbacks really quickly help establish what was lost after the big tragedy.

As I said, I think Davis is borderline as a lead/supporting player, and though the size of her role definitely gives her an advantage here, I don't find it indefensible to place her in this category. And she's spectacular in the part, taking the gift of some dynamite scenes and bringing deep wells of pent up emotion to them. I know she's got her detractors here, but I think she's a pretty wonderful actress -- I've voted for her all three times in these polls -- and I was happy to finally see her make it to the podium.

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Re: Best Supporting Actress 2016

Postby Big Magilla » Tue Feb 28, 2017 1:14 am

Again, I agree with all this year's nominees in the category that has traditionally been the one I most disagree with.

I think Davis earned her win, but like most everyone else, I sure hope she's over herself enough to lighten up the next time she wins, and win again she will. After all, she's only 51, as she keeps reminding us.

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Best Supporting Actress 2016

Postby bizarre » Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:13 am

This year is notable - and groundbreaking - for showcasing three black actresses nominated in the same category for the first time (Davis becoming the first black actress to get three nominations and Spencer becoming the first black actress to get another nomination after winning).

Harris is an engaging actress usually, but here she's easily the worst part of an otherwise brilliant film - hitting the dramatic notes with a sledgehammer instead of finding the character between them. We see Paula wearing a nurse's scrubs in one scene, but with this primary-colours approach but that's our only insight into who she is outside of her addictions. Harris doesn't take us anywhere we haven't been before in much worse, far less insightful pictures.

Spencer is genial in a cute role, but though she had racked up precursor citations I'd expected that if a nominee were to come from this film it would be Janelle Monáe, a singer bursting out of the gate in a breakthrough year with a highly charismatic scene-stealing performance (supported by another good one almost opposite in tone, in Moonlight).

I will jump to Davis' defense much more readily than most posters here, but while I found her work in Fences to be very effective it is still very firmly within her wheelhouse, and I can't vote for her over two actresses I thought I knew but who truly surprised me with their performances this year.

The first of those is Michelle Williams, a talented but resolutely whitebread actress who I've never found particularly interesting until now - here, she's so New England. I know I've met much younger Randis at high school and at the mall in the Northeast while growing up. Williams has a very small role but fills in the blanks in a way that, say, Harris never does - Williams' work is allusive enough that we can surmise how Randi and Lee met, for instance - we certainly know who Randi voted for (Trump, duh), and it's easy to imagine what she said after the horrific day that provides the film the crux of its drama. All this and I havent mentioned her final scene which is, of course, wrenching, with a brave injection of pathetic humour.

But I've gotta go simple with my vote, and Kidman, who is sometimes electric and sometimes seems like someone carved the perfect actress out of Bakelite, has never been more relaxed or more soulful than she is here in what is, on the surface, an unassuming role. I believed in every word she spoke (returning to an Australian accent seems to help brittle down-under actors reconnect with a far more direct style of acting - look at Cate Blanchett in Little Fish for instance).

Outside of Monáe there was maybe only one other feasible contender for a nomination - Greta Gerwig, a character actress who seems flung out of the 70s, in 20th Century Women. This category had many names that could have gained traction in other years but which somehow failed to truly enter the fray in 2016: Lily Gladstone in Certain Women - a lovely performance that was recognised by a number of critics' groups and could have brought even greater diversity to the category that became the biggest beneficiary of the #OscarsSoWhite diversity narratives - as well as Helen Mirren (Eye in the Sky), Felicity Jones (A Monster Calls), Hayley Squires (I, Daniel Blake), Lupita Nyong'o (Queen of Katwe) and Molly Shannon (Other People).

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