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PACHINKOseason 1 review

"Pachinko feels so human and warm, despite the horrors of history. Oh, and that Episode 7? My gawd, television at its finest." -Pam

"I think the book is a masterpiece (I strongly recommend that those who enjoy the series read it)" -Jules

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The Films of 2016.The 17th annual FiLM BiTCH Awards


nominations complete

Best Actress
Annette Bening
Sonia Braga
Viola Davis
Isabelle Huppert
"Michele Leblanc"
Natalie Portman

Is any actor better with a line reading or a reaction shot that can serve multiple purposes at once? Warm but not gullible, deep without self-examing, this star turn is everything. Dorothea wanted to be a pilot; Bening just lifts off and soars in this role.
Elemental. Whether emerging from ocean waves, sensually getting her groove on, or standing her ground in ways that read as inspiring, habitual and self-serving all at once, this movie queen is a force of nature.

Her volcanic eruption from years of quiet self-effacement is the big draw but watch the before and after for the real heartbreak: the way she lovingly performs "Troy's wife" rather than Rose in the first half, and how she recedes again after from habit, but love and joy lost

An absolute triumph of performative cool and psychological heat. Huppert, at the peak of her inimitable gifts, wields her dry wit like a whip, whether snapping at co-stars or self-flagellating. Bonus points:Things to Come

Larrain frames her with claustrophobic precision but she rewards him with Jackie's performative stiffness and multiple colors within that bizarre inimitable voice. Best of all is her resting face in tight grieving closeup: both stupor and maelstrom.

Finalists:Amy Adamsis luminously intelligent but still mystified by earth-changing circumstances inArrival. Even more impressive is how she radiates preternatural empathy, totally selling the 'aliens would trust her' narrative leap;Emma Stonecharms inLa La Landand really delivers with full charismatic movie stardom with "Audition (The Fools Who Dream)" -- (What a year for Best Actress. Breaks my heart not to have a seven-wide list!)

Semi-Finalists:Jessica ChastaininMiss Sloane,Meryl StreepinFlorence Foster Jenkins,Sandra Húllerin Toni Erdmann,Ruth NeggainLoving, andEmily Bluntrunning drunk circles aroundThe Girl on the Train

Best Actor
Casey Affleck
"Lee Chandler"
Ryan Gosling
"St Clair Bayfield"
Viggo Mortensen
Denzel Washington

That hunched posture, the way his mouth barely moves when he speaks. Lee is so tightly wound that the eruptions (barroom brawls and that harrowing police station scene) feel inevitable. Those haunted eyes continually replay the tragedy.
While he lacks the technique of musical stars of yore, it's clear he could have been one.La La Landmakes fantastic use of his physical grace, soulful eyes, and both his classicissm and modernity as a romantic hero. Bonus points for those piano skills. He doesn't play St Clair as an opportunistic spouse but he doesn'tnotplay it that way either, if you understand. His charm and loyalty to Florence is all the more moving due to the complicated and compromised textures of this star turn

Viggo excels as this intellectually rugged idealist who's a contradiction of rigidity in his rejection of conformity.The slow dawning that his children are more than extensions of himself is moving. He's losing them before they leave him.

Bless him for capturing this towering nattering performance of a frustrated loser. Self-aggrandazing and self-pitying in equal measure, Denzel breathes majestic life into this tragic iconic August Wilson character.

Finalists:Colin Farrell's mastery ofThe Lobster's unusual tone is something else. So pitiable but funny, too, especially in his micro-aggressions against his absurd situation

Semi Finalists:Shahab HosseiniinThe Salesman,Adam Driverin Paterson,Chris PineinHell or High Water,Michael FassbenderinThe Light Between Oceans,Peter SimonscekinToni Erdmann, andSunny PawarinLion

Best Supporting Actress
Elle Fanning
Greta Gerwig
Naomie Harris
Riley Keough
Nicole Kidman
"Sue Brierley"
She does her best work yet as a promiscuous teenager who knows less than she thinks but will definitely get there. Bonus points for the careful delineation of when she's putting on airs, when she's honestly speaking her truth, and when they're mixed up together and she isn't sure.

This very 21st century star is a huge boon to this memoir as the connective tissue between adults (past) and kids (future). Gerwig is juggling a lot here -- childwoman spirit, health problems, creative drive -- but feels utterly spontaneous. Bonus pts: "men·stru·a·tion"

Three distinct dazzling views of the same addict; Watch as she recedes from larger than life theatrical (the child's view) to fading pitied obstacle (her son now a teenager) and finally to something like a grieving touchstone, with shared history. What was lost in her private war?

So real you'd think they just saw her on the street and started following with a camera. Keough fascinates with spiteful glimpses as to what drives this callous nomad. Imagine if she'd been born into wealth; a less miserable soul or even more top dog-eats-dogs hurtful?

Yes, she gets a showcase monologue that obliterates the traditional confines of similar "sad mother" roles. But she's perfect before that too, emanating heaps of love and affection but the pained tenacity of metering it out carefully; she knows it's a long haul.

Finalists:Kate Dickieis agonizingly self-flagellating and pious inThe Witch;Olivia Colmanperfectly sells the satiric vision ofThe Lobster. Her comedy is so cruelly deadpan it never betrays its pulse and would judge you for having one; andRossy de Palmais so perfect as the distrustful housekeeper inJulietathat you want to follow her into her own side movie whenever she walks offscreen.

Semi-Finalists:Molly ShannoninOther People,Antonia Zeggersin俱乐部,Octavia SpencerinHidden Figures,Gugu Mbatha RawinMs Sloane, andMichelle WilliamsinManchester by the Sea

Best Supporting Actor
Mahershara Ali
Tom Bennett
"Sir James Martin"
Alden Ehrenreich
"Hobie Doyle"
Ralph Fiennes
"Harry Hawkes"
Trevante Rhodes
Though he's only in the first third of this triptych, his ghost understandably haunts the rest of it, such is Ali's gravitas and the complex weight of the masculine exterior and guilt-plagued interior he's modelling for "Little"

A remarkable feat of playing dumb within a very smart movie. Sir Martin never knows what to say but can't stop saying it. Bonus points for that thoroughly unexamined happiness: in this case ignorance is bliss.

From the moment he first pivots to the camera, huge cowboy hat framing a dim but endearingly guileless movie starmug, he's stolen the picture as effortlessly as Doyle is effortful once he's in a tux.

Best known for magnificently pained stiff men, Harry is a shaggy let it all hang out 180. Fiennes aces that familiar if rare push and pull of your friend with the personality so intense its both irresistible and exhausting.

An impossible task: Melt down three performances by other actors. Stir stagnant years into their soulful mix. Wear your exterior like a well worn but still ill-fitting suit of armor. Somehow Rhodes does all this. And then some.

Finalists:Stephen Hendersonis lived in, relatable, and nuanced, particularly when he pushes back against the role he's usually willing to play for his best friend inFences;Jeff Bridgesis utterly Jeff Bridgesian inHell or High Waterbut this is always a good thing in the proper context -- he's especially good at revealing affection for his partner (Gil Birmingham, also strong) while always keeping him at a ribbing distance; FinallyBilly Crudupdoes his best work in years as a sweet directionless handyman who lets those20th Century Womencome to him.

Semi Finalists:John Goodmanfor10 Cloverfield Lane,Ralph InesoninThe Witch,Michael ShannoninNocturnal Animals, andLucas HedgesinManchester by the Sea