Image via Netflix

91st Oscar Blast: Best Leading Actress – Quite Possibly the Hardest Race This Year

Sorry Little Monsters, Gaga probably doesn’t win this Oscar. Check out our predictions here.

Tonight is the 91st Annual Academy Awards! And all day today we’ll be bringing you a rundown of each category as well as reviews of the nominated films. Next up, we’re discussing the Best Leading Actress category. We’ll explain what the category means and who the front-runner is as of now.

Best Leading Actress

The Best Leading Actress award goes to the lead female role in a film and usually refers to a film that centers on a female character. It’s possible for this award to go to the biggest female role in an ensemble piece, but that is less likely nowadays. The Academy tends to use this category to focus on films that are completely led by a woman and acknowledge that performer’s strengths.

This year the nominees are, Yalitza Aparicio for Roma, Glenn Close for The Wife, Olivia Colman for The Favourite, Melissa McCarthy for Can You Ever Forgive Me? and Lady Gaga for A Star is Born. The women in each of these films lead their cast and the films essentially live or die by their performances. It’s incredibly difficult to choose who could win this year as each of these actresses deliver Oscar worthy performances. It’s one of those years where you almost wish every nominee could win. But in the end there can only be one winner.

I’d love to say that the front runner here is Yalitza Aparicio in Roma. She’s the only actress whose performance is in another language, and yet everything is understood despite the language barrier. You could watch this film without reading a single line of subtitles and get it. The pain is clear in her face as Cleo (Aparicio’s character in Roma) goes through the most difficult year of her life. The language matters, but her performance does so much more than that. It transcends written word. It’s something that every actor strives for. Some actors never accomplish this level of talent in their entire life, and the fact that she did it in her first role, is amazing.

But. This is Glenn Close’s Oscar to lose. She gives the performance of a lifetime, and has often been overlooked by the Academy. This feels like the year where she could fully be acknowledged for all of her work, while be celebrated for a home run performance. Close has also won the Golden Globe, SAG award and lost the BAFTA to Colman. Some might say that give Colman a bit of an edge, but it’s rare that the BAFTA’s don’t award an English Actress, so I’m not counting Close out because of that. I’d love to see Aparicio win this, but honestly, this is likely Close’s award to lose.

So as of now here’s the final word:

Best Leading Actress: Glenn Close, The Wife.

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Written by Alex Lancaster
(Alex is a life long film fan, and has dedicated his life to watching, making and obsessing over films. His favorite film is Big Fish, and he despises Avatar. He has a 4 year old son. And a bad habit of saying more than he needs to. Follow @alex5348 on Twitter)

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