Ella Goodstadt

Top Acting Performances in Movies

Mia Goth in “Pearl”
Although Pearl may have never fulfilled her “I’m a star” quote, Mia Goth certainly did. In this slasher flick, Mia Goth captivated audiences with a haunting performance as Pearl, a girl who enjoys both extreme acts of violence and showbiz. Goth’s screams lit up the screen, as did her switch from acting like a seemingly peaceful girl to a quick-to-anger murderer. By far, the most impactful scene of Goth’s character was her very last, when she smiles directly at the camera until her face twitches and the credits roll. The script didn’t even include this smile, so props to those who suggested it on filming day! “Pearl “is a prequel to the movie “X,” and with a third movie coming to complete the trilogy, Goth will impress audiences again soon!

Viola Davis in “The Woman King”
Perhaps no one in Hollywood is comparable to Viola Davis, and once again, she proves this in her role as General Nanisca. Davis shows the intensity required of any battle general in this movie, but with her number of accolades in film, she took this intensity to another level. Playing a leader of an all-female warrior group requires a certain (very high) level of physical strength, too, and Davis dedicated days, at age 56, to training for this film, spending hours running and lifting weights. With that alone, she might have earned a spot on this list. However, her strength of character sent her performance over the edge, making it to the top 5 acting performances of 2022.

Austin Butler in “Elvis”
Someone should’ve told Tom Hanks that Austin Butler deserved some of the former’s screen time. Butler embodied Elvis in this film, imitating the man’s exact movements, mannerisms, and, most importantly, voice. As evidenced by his still-Elvis-esque voice, the months that Butler dedicated to becoming the world-famous 1960s singer paid off. He delivered a performance that showed Elvis’s evolution of emotions throughout his lifetime and how easily other people can manipulate these emotions. Although the acting in biopics is questionable sometimes, Austin Butler in “Elvis” redefined this stigma, showing how dedicated actors can play any role if only they set their minds to it.

Michelle Yeoh in “Everything Everywhere All at Once”
In this multiversal adventure film, Yeoh shows the audience a range of emotions few actors can say they can express. The movie completes the definition of so many genres, such as comedy, action/adventure, and sci-fi, that only someone as talented as Yeoh could play its protagonist. She shows audiences what it’s like to live as an Asian-American person in today’s world and the future when perhaps we will discover what the multiverse truly is. In “Everything Everywhere All at Once,” the audiences’ emotions felt “everywhere,” and without the casting of Yeoh, this statement would not be accurate.

Angela Bassett in “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever”
Walking into the movie theater to watch “Wakanda Forever”, Marvel fans knew their emotions were about to spiral out of control. Angela Bassett, playing Queen Ramonda, managed to make that exact thing happen. She perfectly showcased the various stages of grief (as did Letitia Wright, of course), especially during “that” scene between Ramonda and Okoye. Bassett used the strength of her queenly character to present what it means to grieve when others rely on your soundness of mind, but in that particular scene, she showed how motherly love overcomes that calm. Marvel films rarely get nominated for Oscars, but Bassett could change that.

Various actors and actresses produced outstanding performances for movies in 2022. (Natalie Finkelstein)

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