The Halfway Report Card – the best actor performances of 2020 so far
performances, order, me
Ben Affleck, The Way Back
Ben Affleck has had a well-documented substance abuse problem of his own and gives a career performance in The Way Back. There wasn’t a moment I didn’t buy him as a bloated, puffy drunk, who is in a constant self-destructive mode and ready to hit rock bottom at any moment. Even his take on a tough-as-nails basketball coach is gripping and has such a sharp bark that it would make Bobby Knight take a step back. However, by the end of the film, you watch Affleck, in a scene of great tenderness, tell someone the source of his constant inner torture. The visual is a moving one, redeeming his character, and unlike anything he has ever done.
Mamoudou Athie, Uncorked
Pierfrancesco Favino, The Traitor
Michael Huisman, The Other Lamb
Hugh Jackman, Bad Education
Bad Education a I this a anyin
Delroy Lindo, Da 5 Bloods
Tzi Ma, Tigertail
Tzi Ma’s role in Tigertail is a sorrowful East Asian one– deeply felt, that breaks you down, allowing you to appreciate what you have and long for what you don’t. His turn isn’t flashy, but thoughtful, and you may have to look closely and there is a great deal running under the surface that goes on to the naked eye. That doesn’t make its impact less meaningful and reminded me of ’90s arthouse independent cinema that’s upfront and honest that is highlighted by its visceral, moody score. Ma brings Grover’s tale to life that is no different from thousands, which is far too often forgotten. It’s an East Asian story that’s as American as apple pie.
Ben Mendelsohn, Babyteeth
Mendelsohn things in Babyteeth it some
Denis O’Hare, Swallow
small role here, listening, manage being award-worthy leaves their own closure, which remarkable.
Vince Vaughn, Arkansas
might ’90s to Paradise. The main reason to see this film is how Vaughn’s character gets a wider look, and you completely forget it’s the man you’ve loved in Wedding Crashers, Old School, and Dodgeball. As the film flashes back to his days as a pawnshop owner who takes it upon himself to become the mysterious Frog, the tall, gangly comedic actor is almost gone, and the brooding actor morphs in the smart, ruthless Dixie’s drug kingpin. It’s a story I wish the film centered around, using Vaughn’s character throughout the film, folding in the flashbacks, with the newcomers more as supporting players.
We are fast becoming the number one independent website for streaming coverage. Please support Ready Steady Cut today. Secure its future — we need you!
M.N. Miller has been a film and television writer for Ready Steady Cut since August of 2018 and is patiently waiting for the next Pearl Jam album to come out.