Annette Bening

Annette Bening

Ok so it's fair to say that Natalie Portman will walk away with the Best Actress Oscar at the end of the month for her central performance in Black Swan - and a great performance it is too.

However I would like to make one final claim for Annette Bening to cause the upset of the night and walk away with a highly deserved award.

The actress was back on the big screen last year with The Kids Are All Right, which saw her star alongside Julianne Moore and Mark Ruffalo, and my god was it a great performance.

There have always been suggestions that the those great roles dry up for actresses when they reach a certain age but for Bening this was one of those roles that she could really get her teeth into.

The actress took on the role of Nic who lives with her lesbian partner Jules and their two teenage children.

When their children bring their sperm donor father into their lives Nic sees her world turned upside down.

Any other year and Bening would have been winning Best Actress gongs left right and centre it's such a shame that she has come up against a career best performance from Portman - who deserves all of the acclaim that has been coming her way.

It’s a tour de force performance from the wine swilling Bening as moves from inviting to cold and compassionate to a down right bitch in a heart beat.

The Kids Are All Right was one of the stand out movies of 2010 - and fully deserves it's place in the Best Picture category.

Director Lisa Cholodenko looks at the monotony of everyday life and how marriages become routine not to mention the run of the mill fall outs between children and their parents.

What is so great about this movie is that it is a look into the disjointed modern family, the fact that it’s a same-sex relationship really is a bit of a footnote and not a driving force.

And while I was a big fan of Black Swan and Portman's haunting performance Bening's turn was just the best of the last twelve months.

You do have to ask if The Kids Are All Right had been released in early 2011 - with the majority of the Oscar pictures - would Bening's great performance have stood out more?

This is Bening's fourth Oscar nomination and her third for Best Actress it would be true justice should she finally walk away with the award in under two weeks time!

The Oscars are announced Sunday 27th February.

FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw

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