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Tough and Tender - The Top 20 Female Performances of 2008

Twenty talented ladies, 20 performances worthy of multiple little gold men. Unfortunately, as in all years, someone has to come out on top. But after looking over this impressive list, picking the preeminent turn of 2008 seems almost impossible.

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The Annihilating Feminine: Kate Winslet Gets Nasty in The Reader

In Winslet’s clever, low-key performance, all of the character’s ambiguousness remains intact, making Hanna her most complicated, mature creation to date.

Film

He’s Lost Control

The kids who grew up in the '90s had the haunted Kurt Cobain; my generation had the tormented Ian Curtis.

Reviews

Youth Without Youth

"You learn more quickly, more profoundly in dreams" -- the audience becomes a part of the hallucinations.

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Performance Art: The Best Acting of 2007 - Male

From the tender and eerie precision of Sam Riley's depiction of Joy Division singer Ian Curtis in Control to yet another superlative performance by Daniel Day-Lewis in There Will Be Blood, PopMatters highlights the best male actors of 2007.

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Youth Without Youth

Based on the writings of Mircea Eliade, Francis Ford Coppola's first movie in 10 years is goofy, contrived, and self-absorbed.

Reviews

Control

What could have easily ended up as a humorless exercise in hipster excess turns out warm and snappy.

Matt Mazur
Reviews

Control

Despite occasional strange and impossibly intimate reveries, the film lapses frequently into biopickish shorthand.

Reviews

Downfall (2004)

Eva and Hitler kill themselves off-screen, the precise steps they took unseen because, the director says, 'the worst thing that could happen to this most horrible person of history is that he become a myth'.

Cynthia Fuchs
Reviews

Downfall (Der Untergang) (2004)

Downfall's preoccupation with a flesh-and-blood Hitler is central to its meditation on fanaticism.

Lester Pimentel
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