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Weekly Discussion: Underrated Actors & Actresses

Discussion in 'Entertainment Forum' started by popdisaster00, Jun 13, 2016.

  1. popdisaster00

    I'm usually deluded Moderator

    Let's chat about those actors and actresses that are doing great work but consistently flying under the radar or not hitting that "A-list" status.

    I'll start: Ben Foster. He was great in The Messenger, 3:10 to Yuma, and some other films. I feel like he's on the cusp of being an awards contender. He just needs to need to avoid doing things like Warcraft.
  2. smoke4thecaper

    out of context reference Supporter

    Ben Foster was going to be my pick! hahaha

    Barry Pepper has always been a favorite of mine (love him in We Were Soldiers and The 25th Hour). I'm big on character actors - I always appreciate the subtle works of familiar faces/names.

    I'm unsure whether or not to include Emily Blunt, b/c she's gained a lot of steam over the past couple years, but still seems to fly under most people's radars. She's probably my favorite actress working today.
    popdisaster00 likes this.
  3. popdisaster00

    I'm usually deluded Moderator

    Emily Blunt is great. Killed it in Sicario.
    smoke4thecaper likes this.
  4. smoke4thecaper

    out of context reference Supporter

    Girl on a Train looks like it'll be another winner for her, too. As long as she avoids Huntsman-type garbage, she can be a versatile actress.
  5. Jake Gyllenhaal

    Wookie of the Year Supporter

    Yea, I love Emily Blunt and thought she was great in the underrated Your Sister's Sister. Also, last time I was in NYC when I was walking through Grand Central Station, I had to pass through a movie production set and saw on the back of a fold-up chair the title of the movie which was Girl on the Train. But I didn't see any actors hanging around.

    Yea, Ben's one of the few who seems committed to his roles. He's great as a villain in 3:10 and 30 Days of Night. He also pulled off playing mentally disabled Eli in Freaks and Geeks
  6. iCarly Rae Jepsen

    run away with me Platinum

    Sam Rockwell
    Paul Dano
    Dane DeHaan

    Kristen Stewart always got a lot of flack but she's great

    I'd say Sandra Bullock Reese Witherspoon and Anne Hathaway even though they have Oscars because I think their romcom work doesn't get enough love
    mad likes this.
  7. domotime2

    Great Googly Moogly Supporter

    would Cillian Murphy count?
  8. popdisaster00

    I'm usually deluded Moderator

    domotime2 likes this.
  9. smoke4thecaper

    out of context reference Supporter

    Absolutely. Don't see why not considering that he isn't a household name but is still a prominent actor w/ a lot of great roles under his belt.
  10. Cody Prestigious

    Jere Burns for sure.
    OhTheWater likes this.
  11. Liz

    Ew, David

    Sebastian Stan and Tatiana Maslany (someone put them in a movie together please)
  12. kylethrash


    Ben Mendelsohn is brilliant in everything he does.
  13. Cody Prestigious

    She gets a lot of work these days, but I would still say Greta Gerwig should be a lot more known than she is.
    junkmanserenade likes this.
  14. Michael Qualiano


    Justin Theroux (The Leftovers as a whole but that's a separate issue)
    Anthony Mackie
    Jake Johnson (love his more serious work in the Swanberg films)
    Ryan Gosling (from a strict acting standpoint a lot of people tend to write him off)
    Jason Segel and Josh Radnor (Their work outside of HIMYM is always worth watching and Segel as DFW was award-worthy)
  15. Phillip


    Ben Foster came to mind as soon as I read the title. He's certainly not underrated to us, it seems.

    I'm not sure is Michael Shannon is underrated, but he's pretty fascinating to watch in anything I've ever seen him in.

    I also agree with Emily Blunt.

    And Ben Mendelsohn! He was scary in Animal Kingdom.
    smoke4thecaper and popdisaster00 like this.
  16. Nathan

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    I long championed Cillian Murphy and Michael B. Jordan, though Jordan has since become a large presence. Kristen Stewart's performances in Adventureland and Clouds of Sils Maria are absolutely phenomenal, particularly the latter. She does so much in that film, I know the common knock on her is that she's expressionless or not very emotive, but what she does with the quiet moments in that film is exemplary work and she's absolutely incredible. I mean, she keeps up with and sometimes overpowers Juliette Binoche.

    I think some big movie stars get underrated as actors. Tom Cruise, Channing Tatum, George Clooney, I know they have plenty of acclaim and success, but I think sometimes audiences misread acting. It isn't just dialogue or big speeches/moments, but the subtler stuff, the way an actor carries themselves physically, the way their physicality or their mannerisms in their movement is just as much a part of it. Channing Tatum in Foxcatcher I think is a truly fantastic performance that went under the radar, what he does with very little dialogue in the opening of that film is really exceptional character work through acting, and what he expresses with his physicality in the Magic Mike films is also fantastic (the dancing yes, but they really are layered, strong performances). Similarly, some people knock Cruise and Clooney for being the same in every movie, or being themselves, and that's just not what they're doing. Clooney in a film like Solaris is another world from Clooney in something like Burn After Reading or the Descendants. Sure, he's a movie star, he has his limitations, but great acting doesn't mean one has to be a chameleon. Clooney plays to different parts of his range depending on what he's doing, whether it's a stoic, masculine performance like the American, a raw, personal performance like Solaris, or a broad, comedic performance like just about every Coen Brothers film he's done.

    I also think most actresses and performers of color are underrated by the industry. They are confined to roles that are specific to their gender and/or race. Natalie Portman won an Oscar for an astounding performance in Black Swan, then played second fiddle to fucking Chris Hemsworth in the Thor franchise (nothing against Hemsworth). Catherine Keener is one of our best actresses working, and she was a detached housewife for like, two minutes of screentime in Captain Phillips. She should be owning films of her own, but she has to take that role? Lupita Nyong'o, one of the most magnetic and incredible actresses I've ever seen, has played two CGI characters in her three roles since winning an Oscar. Even Michael B. Jordan, mentioned before, has talked about the limitations of being a black actor, that he doesn't get offered the same stuff the Ryan Goslings and Leonardo DiCaprios get offered. So we don't get to see actors of color or actresses display the same range or breadth of meaty roles as our white leading men get to. I mean, Sally Field and Marisa Tomei have been/are Aunt May. That's fucking ridiculous.

    A few more names I love and always hope to see more of: Anna Paquin, the good-will she earned from one of the greatest performances I've ever seen in Margaret has earned her lifetime support, Teyonah Parris, Keith Stanfield (Short Term 12, Selma), Jennifer Garner, David Thewlis, Laura Dern, Amy fucking Ryan, Kyle Chandler (I guess anyone from Friday Night Lights), I think Kevin Costner is a stronger actor than he gets credit for, I've been a Jesse Williams fan since Greek, Brenda Song, Richard Kind, Martin Starr, Lizzy Caplan, maybe everyone from Party Down, and just because everyone hates on him for Spider-Man and he's actually factually great, Tobey Maguire.
    Chase Tremaine likes this.
  17. Michael Qualiano


    Kyle Chandler for sure. Good call there!
    anonimito and smoke4thecaper like this.
  18. Liz

    Ew, David

    I feel like he plays some type of law enforcement in everything I've ever seen him in haha
  19. popdisaster00

    I'm usually deluded Moderator

    Ben Mendelsohn rules.
    Phillip likes this.
  20. nchlsnwtn

    Regular Prestigious

    tim roth immediately comes to mind. his roles in reservoir dogs (prepping as undercover) and hateful eight (perfects TWO FUCKING ACCENTS) are legendary imo
  21. GEM37

    She haunts the roads

    Michael Peña has some prominence, but I really don't think he gets the attention he so consistently deserves. He is hysterical at comedy and 100% real in every dramatic role I've ever seen him in. Maybe the only bum note of his was in Gangster Squad, but... well, it's Gangster Squad.

    He is, in my estimation, one of this generation's finest actors.
    mad and popdisaster00 like this.
  22. Michael Shannon was the first person to come to mind, idk how underrated he is I guess but I love that guy

    On a much smaller scale, I wish Vanessa Bayer got more attention outside of SNL. I think she's hilarious and would love to see her in more things.
    mad likes this.
  23. Tom Hanks
  24. Realistically I'd probably go Shannon too. I'd say he's under-acknowledged, at least?
  25. I also love him in The Legend of 1900.