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Arts & Entertainment

Oscars: The Weirdest among The weird may win

SUNDAY, FEB. 27, 2011

Who says the Oscars are too mainstream?

This year’s best actress category features performances in films that range from slightly off-center to totally off the map. This is one category, at least, where the weirdest film may win.

The actress: Nicole Kidman, “Rabbit Hole”

The deal: Her A-list status hasn’t helped her movie earn even $2 million at the box-office. That’s probably because of the dark subject matter: It’s about a couple grieving for a dead child. The lack of buzz canceled out the good reviews, which makes Kidman a long shot.

The actress: Jennifer Lawrence, “Winter’s Bone”

The deal: The 20-year-old looked for all the world like the backwoods meth-cooker’s daughter she played in this indie movie. But she’s actually a potential It Girl, with upcoming roles in “X-Men: First Class” and the Mel Gibson comeback “The Beaver.” This may not be her year, but she’s got time.

The actress: Michelle Williams, “Blue Valentine”

The deal: In this ultra-intense indie drama, Williams and Ryan Gosling played a married couple slowly splitting apart. And while few have quibbled with her performance, the most notable thing about her nomination is that her co-star didn’t get one.

The actress: Annette Bening, “The Kids Are All Right”

The deal: Critics raved about her portrayal of a fiercely protective lesbian mother. She’s been hard on the Oscar campaign trail in recent days, leading some to wonder whether she may yet come out on top.

The actress: Natalie Portman, “Black Swan”

The deal: The role of a mentally unstable woman who may or may not have an enormous swan living in her torso wouldn’t seem to be Oscar material. But with her star rising and a slew of movies coming out this year, Portman is the one to put your money on.


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