Below I have listed some of my ultimate lady loves in film. Do bear in mind, these are not all of them. Those that are on the list are there because I like them as actresses, but primarily I have put my favourite characters they portray on here.
In no particular order…
Anna Karina as Nana Kleinfrankenheim in Vivre Sa Vie
Anna Karina brings a certain sincerity and affection to this film. As a character she is simply mesmerising and depicts the struggle of women in this era beautifully. Karina creates depth to Nana, giving herself flexibility to be playful as well as display her inner turmoils.
2. Kate Winslet as Nancy Cowan in Carnage
Realistically I could have picked any of the cast, but Kate Winslet in particular provides her character with effortless sophistication, even when their situation descends into utter chaos. She also graciously navigates this descent which aids the story’s sense of humour perfectly – starting poised and rational, she’s still as likeable when outraged.
3. Faye Dunaway as Bonnie Parker in Bonnie and Clyde
I think there’s a runaway in every girl, and I also think many girls can identify with Bonnie. As for Faye Dunaway, she gives Bonnie a coolness that makes this murderess thief enviable and liberating. Maybe there’s something wrong with that, but ultimately she’s a rule breaker and feisty as hell.
4. Angelina Jolie as Lisa in Girl, Interrupted
In my eyes, it’s fair to say that this role was Oscar worthy. Angelina Jolie presents no limits or boundaries to Lisa’s sociopathic personality – her presence is always as exciting as it is intense. Lisa is very much the leader of the pack, she’s fearless and authoritative, but Jolie equally depicts her weaknesses and fears.
5. Ziyi Zhang as Xiao Mei in House of Flying Daggers
I cannot lie, there’s is a whole lot of envy towards Ziyi Zhang. In this instance she is essentially one of the most dangerous women in film – Xiao Mei is as kick-ass as she is heartbreaking, while also having the ability to be ferocious, she is also poised. Why wouldn’t she be on this list?
6. Julianne Moore as Charley in A Single Man
Charley is complex, and although she is beautiful and charmingly fun, she carries much sorrow. I admire the way Moore is able to give Charley some illusivity in the way that she is never quite understood. Classy, yet lonely, Moore is able to draw empathy from the spectator despite her seemingly care-free lifestyle.
7. Anne Parillaud as Nikita in Nikita
Erratic, untameable and can give any male agent a run for their money – Parillaud could not have been better cast. She combines rebellion and naivety so smoothly, as well as adaptability and resourcefulness. Parillaud, in my eyes, is the mortal Wonder Woman.
8. Tilda Swinton as Eva Khatchadourian in We Need to Talk About Kevin
Eva defies all the conventional norms of parenting and womanhood – her ‘unnatural’ desire to not want children for a start. Furthermore, Swinton’s ability to provide such a range of emotional variety from start to beginning is enigmatic. She is daring and brave, and elegantly portrays every parents’ nightmare.
9. Eva Green as Isabelle in The Dreamers
One of her more notorious performances, Green presents the most fanciable woman! Isabelle is young, creative and part of the French revolution. Green embodies everything Parisian, film and youthful through Isabelle, and it’s hard not to identify.
10. Kristen Stewart as Valentine in Clouds of Sils Maria
Stewart as Valentine really ignited my love for her. In this particular role she addresses the transition from traditional to contemporary within acting as well as social media. She has a cool chicness about her, as well as an empowering wisdom despite her age. Stewart also engages with our current generation in a sophisticated and philosophical approach.