You know that saying "Work hard, and success will follow you" Well, from their performances, these actors clearly worked hard, but not many people seemed to recognize them for it. So, here I am trying to do them justice. Here are 5 performances that were really good but went unnoticed either due to the fact that they were upstaged by a better performer and were overlooked, or the movie itself went unnoticed. Regardless, here are my favorite performances that were heavily underrated.
5) Miles Teller as Andrew Neiman (Whiplash)
Miles Teller’s performance as a boy who is struggling to prove his passion to others is one that requires a great deal of motivation to be shown on screen. Miles Teller was up for the job. Whenever people talk about Whiplash, J.K Simmons gets all the love and while he was great, the main thing he had to do throughout the film was to be a stern and ruthless teacher. Miles Teller, on the other hand, had to portray a guy who didn’t know how to express his love for what he does. This sometimes led his character to express a variety of emotions. He was either frustrated, depressed, furious, overjoyed or even cocky. Sure, J.K Simmons did a lot of that too, but it was Andrew’s journey that we were a part of. We saw it from his view and damn it, I rooted for him the most. Also, he played the drums, man.
4) Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent/Two-Face (The Dark Knight)
Aaron Eckhart’s performance was one of the few that I would consider not only underrated, but overlooked as well. It almost went unnoticed. Heath Ledger as The Joker was awesome and yes, he was my favorite part of the film too. But that’s not to say that Eckhart’s performance doesn't deserve our praise as well.. In fact, I would argue that Aaron Eckhart deserved to be nominated for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars that year.
Regardless, what Aaron Eckhart brought to the table was giving us the Harvey Dent we never got to see before. You see, unlike Joker, there were no good versions of Harvey Dent in any of the other Batman movies prior to The Dark Knight. Eckhart brought the charm, intelligence and confidence to Harvey Dent and he brought the ruthless, tragic and psychotic traits to Two-Face. To see someone pull off both these roles was an absolute treat. In fact, the one issue I had with The Dark Knight is that Two-Face wasn’t featured much in the movie.
3) Sam Rockwell as Sam Bell (Moon)
Sam Rockwell is one of the most underrated actors, period. His performance in this movie is one of the best lead performances I have ever seen from an actor. Also, apart from Kevin Spacey’s GERTY (the computer), he is the only one on screen for most of the movie. What makes his performance so special to me is that he was able to capture the characters loneliness very well. Besides, giving a performance where you are on screen for most of the film is an achievement in and of itself.
2) Logan Lerman as Charlie Kelmeckis (The Perks of Being a Wallflower)
Let me start off by saying that I am not the biggest fan of Logan Lerman. I didn’t think he was that good of an actor before seeing this film. So, when I found out that he starred in this movie, I went into it with very low expectations. Thank God, I was so wrong.
Logan Lerman gave one of the most memorable coming-of-age performances in recent times. The fact that his performance in the film was overlooked due to Ezra Miller’s performance kind of got me agitated (Ezra Miller was awesome though). What Logan Lerman did so well with his performance was hiding a part of himself. Throughout the entire film, he does a great job of hinting at something that happened to his character, which ultimately factors in to the emotional climax of the movie. Not only that, he was able to portray a shy and misunderstood high schooler quite well. It was something I related to and I am sure others did too. Which is why I think that his performance was underrated.
1) Jim Carrey as Joel Barish (Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind)
Where should I start? This is Jim Carrey like we have never seen before. I mean it. When I first saw this movie, I just couldn’t find myself accepting that the guy who I was seeing on screen was JIM CARREY. That’s a testament to what a great actor he can really be. Unlike any of his other performances such as Ace Ventura or Liar Liar, where he does a lot exaggerated facial expressions (which I love), he was more subdued.
You barely see the Jim Carrey we know and love. What we see is a man who is alone, shy and afraid of socializing with others. This was the kind of performance I had always wanted to see from Jim Carrey, and I got it. Kate Winslet got a lot of well-deserved praise for this movie. Given that this was the role for me that broke Carrey's typecasting, the fact that he didn't receive a nomination did get me on my nerves just a little bit.
So guys, there is my list, what did you think? Was it any good or do you think that there are many more underrated performances? Use the comment section to wage war on me. But before you do so, can you tell me...