Best actress of the year! (A placeholder for all the rest of my lists)

1 January 2012

The forthcoming Feminéma La Jefita statuette, based on genuine Cycladic art!

Here’s the thing about Best-of-the-Year lists: people like me haven’t seen half the motherfucken films because we live in Regular America, where they dribble great indie films out to us as if they’re rare commodities that only goddamn Newyoricans and Angelenos get to see.

This is too bad, because I’ve just invented the soon-to-be-coveted La Jefita statuette, to be awarded sparingly and only in person by me to artists of my choosing.

When I finally get a crack at these films of which I have heard so much good stuff, I have a big plan for categories of:

  • Best Feminist Film (will it be Girl With the Dragon Tattoo??)
  • Best Female-Directed Film (once I get the chance to see We Need to Talk About Kevin and Pariah, dammit)
  • Best Female-Oriented Film (will it be Poetry?? or will Hanna or The Lady edge it out? is it even possible I could see Kenneth Lonergan’s Margaret??)

In my heart of hearts, I’d also like to add far more idiosyncratic categories like:

  • Most Feminist Period Drama That Avoids Anachronism
  • Sexiest Scene in Which a Woman Eats Food
  • Best Fight Scene in Which A Woman Kicks a Man’s Ass
  • Most Realistic Dialogue That Women Might Actually Say
  • Best Role for a Veteran Actress Who Is Not Helen Mirren or Meryl Streep

Stay tuned on that one. I have to gird myself for controversy.

Only one award is ready to be given: BEST ACTRESS! Because no other performance by an actress can possibly beat out Joyce McKinney — as herself — in Errol Morris’s Tabloid.

She’s amazing! Is she BAT-SHIT CRAZY or BARKING MAD, the way one tabloid journalist portrays her? or a hopeless romantic, which is how she describes herself (and how she seems to have lived her life)? Does she really have a genius-level IQ? What really happened in that cottage in Devon in 1977? And who’s been threatening bloggers like me with lawsuits ever since the documentary was released?

Joyce McKinney is riveting, beautiful, clever, and unforgettable. I don’t care if it was a documentary: McKinney is playing the part of McKinney, and she’s doing it brilliantly.

Congratulations, Joyce — you are the first-ever winner of Feminéma’s marble La Jefita statuette!

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9 Responses to “Best actress of the year! (A placeholder for all the rest of my lists)”

  1. tam Says:

    I LOVE your categories, and look forward to what you’ll come up with on:

    Sexiest Scene in Which a Woman Eats Food
    (I’m going to think hard on this category. May have to go back years to find an excellent one!)

    Best Role for a veteran Actress not MS or HM:….
    have not seen the film yet, but perhaps Janet McTeer (who I love) in a small role in Albert Nobbs?

    Haven’t heard of Joyce McKinney or Tabloid. Intriguing. Will search for it. But likely not available in Canada 😦

    • Didion Says:

      Oh, if only I had a chance to see Albert Nobbs. I’ve heard mixed things about it so far, but the buzz on Janet McTeer is amazing.

      Still considering other categories. Let me know if you think of a good one.

  2. tam Says:

    Another suggestion for Best role for Veteran Actress….
    Vanessa Redgrave in Coriolanus. Coming to theatres in late January. I’m looking out for it.

    How about Most Interesting Conversation between two Women which passes the Bechdel Test!

    • Didion Says:

      Argh, ANOTHER 2011 film that’ll be dribbled out to me over the course of January. I spend more money on movie tix in Jan. than any other time.

      But Tam, I’m right on the same page with you re: Redgrave. She’s been fabulous in everything she’s appeared in lately — Miral, The Whistleblower — what she really needs is a meaty part to dig in to. She has an uncanny ability to appear quite enigmatic and morally ambiguous; I kept wondering, during The Whistleblower, whether she had something up her sleeve. Would love to see her in a rich part.

      And another thing: your category name is much better than the one I’d come up with. Corrections have been made.

  3. tam Says:

    Here’s a passionate and fiery endorsement of Redgrave for Best Supporting Actress from Andrew O’Hehir:

    Vanessa Redgrave, “Coriolanus” On this one, Academy members, I’m drawing a line in the sand. Did you actually watch Ralph Fiennes’ terrific adaptation of Shakespeare’s bleakest tragedy all the way through? If you fell asleep with a glass of sherry, start over again! If you did, and you saw 74-year-old Vanessa Redgrave as the terrifying Volumnia, the mother who would rather see her son come back dead from the war than not go at all, and you did not realize that this was one of the greatest Shakespeare performances ever committed to film, then I don’t know what to say. Mail me your card so I can publicly humiliate you, and perhaps God will forgive you. I can feel, dammit, that the Academy’s going to ignore Redgrave — because she’s a notorious commie who might say something inappropriate, because it’s Shakespeare but the depressing kind, not the funny, sexy, dress-up kind — and it makes me feel like the guy in “Office Space” with the stapler problem. I’m going to burn all your houses down. Metaphorically, of course.

    Phew!

    • Didion Says:

      I AM SO EXCITED TO SEE THIS FILM. Man, what an endorsement this is. Whether or not this makes me very afraid of O’Hehir’s retribution, I want to create a new kind of Redgrave cult to worship her. !!!!!

      Not least because I’ve decided that no single film can win more than one La Jefita award — and this possibility frees me up to give another film a different award.


  4. […] long, increasingly unmanageable post, still unfinished, is on my La Jefita (the boss!) Awards in which I celebrate women on & off screen — and in the course of writing it has come to my attention that even all the fucking animals […]


  5. […] you’ll remember that our Best Actress La Jefita prize has already been awarded to Joyce McKinney of Errol Morris’s Tabloid. In mentioning this again, we fully intend to list our Honorable Mentions as soon as we’ve […]


  6. […] me repeat that after reading about Vanessa Redgrave in Coriolanus (thanks again, Tam) I’m quite certain that this particular prize was Redgrave’s to lose. Too bad the film […]


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