10 Great Performances in Average Films
Given the law of averages, it’s fairly common that as film fans we’re far more likely to run into a stinker than we are a new classic, or worse still a underwhelming slice of anti-climax that promised so much more. Quite often that leaves us deciphering a mess and hanging on to small morsels of consolation from an ultimately wasted couple of hours.
The end result of this is that we often stumble across a disproportionately good turn from the only actor in the movie who seemed to be taking their work seriously. You could make a legitimate claim that this is far more worthy than excellent acting in Oscar bait, but such feats are so often ignored and dismissed along with its mediocre surround.
Here is a run down of ten such performances, a rare moment of acknowledgement for the thespians who really did suffer for their art.
Sigourney Weaver in Alien: Resurrection
Appropriately kicking us off is an actress playing a part only made possible by ridiculous plotting. After three strong central performances (or two and a half, for those of a pedantic nature) in the Alien franchise, Weaver returns as the now cloned Ripley. In a rare example of future science not being conveniently perfect, the reborn Ripley comes back with a smattering of Queen Alien DNA in her system, resulting in some disturbing new facets to her personality.
While Resurrection is an unsophisticated gore fest of relative entertainment value, Weaver, almost unnoticed, gives a curious and enjoyable performance as the altered Ripley, with old parts of the classic heroine showing up in glimpses between dark and predatory tangents. As a drifting and homeless figure, not quite fully human, she is surprisingly compelling and, dare I say it, almost convincing amongst the B movie ham. Sterling work in spite of the numerous obstacles, including almost all of her dialogue.
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