Cate Blanchett for Carol
Rooney Mara for Carol
Saoirse Ronan, Brooklyn
Alicia Vikander, The Danish Girl
Brie Larson, Room
In Carol, Cate Blanchett is powerful as a woman holding things together on the surface, desperate to placate her husband, and hold onto her child, all while falling in love with a younger woman. No hysterics ever from Cate, she has too much self-control.
As for Rooney Mara, her Therese character is on the opposite side of the spectrum from her kickass Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. In Carol she is a bit of a deer in the headlights as she takes note of and discovers who she actually is.
Saoirse Ronan as Eilis grew before our eyes from a young, frightened immigrant to a bold, happy young woman in love in Brooklyn. She and Emory Cohen had the kind of cinematic chemistry that makes you question how much acting was actually required.
In The Danish Girl, Alicia Vikander almost stole the film from Eddie Redmayne—not so easy when your costar is playing a woman as well—with her deeply moving response to her husband’s transgender revelation. Unlike Cate, Alicia does fall apart. Lots of tears and pathos but all utterly believable and gripping.
And Brie Larson somehow captured the depressed nature inherent in a seven year’s captivity in Room at the same time as showing the fierce devotion of a loving mother to her son, even though her offspring is a result of rape by her captor.
While the entire Hollywood Reporter Actress Roundtable hasn’t been posted to the web yet, here’s a five minute clip from the conversation with Brie Larson discussing her approach to the role.