“The Danish Girl”
OscarsⓇ Nominated Role: Alicia Vikander plays Gerda, a painter in the 1920s who wrestles with her course of action when her husband reveals his desire to live as a woman.
A brilliant young actress, Alicia Vikander first caught my eye in the Academy Award nominated “Anna Karenina” in 2012. Despite playing the very supporting role of Kitty, alongside Domhnall Gleeson, she jumped out at me and her performance stuck with me, as she commanded the role despite limited screen-time. That same year, she was the lead in the Academy Award nominated foreign language feature “A Royal Affair,” alongside “Hannibal” star Mads Mikkelsen, which with both of their performances became one of my favorite films of 2012. Vikander would pop in several films across the next few years including “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.” and “Seventh Son.”
Vikander would not land on the Academy’s radar until 2015 with “Ex Machina,” where she blew everyone away as the artificial intelligence once again across from Domhnall Gleeson. But the role that would ultimately get her nominated was for “The Danish Girl,” where she played Gerda, the wife of a painter that struggles with desiring to be a woman, despite being a man. Gerda’s emotional struggle and ability to make the best out of all her situations, while trying to stay true to her wedding vows, was the struggle I most grabbed on to during the film and it became Vikander’s story, ultimately, despite the supporting nomination.
Who’s her competition? Having landed in the Best Actress in a Supporting Role category, rather than the Leading category places Vikander at a huge advantage. Despite Kate Winslet’s support and critics awards and Golden Globe wins, Vikander is the fresh face that wowed the Academy. She was one of the only names locked before nominations to get into one of the acting categories, rivaled only by Rooney Mara (“Carol”) who had the same struggle of whether she’d be landing in Supporting or Leading. With similar period roles, I feel Vikander’s role allows her to reveal a broader spectrum of emotion that I believe will most the Academy more than Mara’s singular performance. When they vote for Vikander, whether fair or not, I believe they’ll be voting for both her performance in “The Danish Girl” and in “Ex Machina.” Winslet is the veteran in these categories and having won several awards already, likely falls lower in the pack than these two. Like Saoirse Ronan, as long as Alicia Vikander continues acting, I believe we’ll be seeing her at the Oscars quite a bit.
Previous nominations? This is the first Academy Award nomination for Alicia Vikander.
// Produced by Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Anne Harrison, Tom Hooper, and Gail Mutrux //Directed by Tom Hooper //
// Dated Viewed: Saturday, January 23rd, 2016 // LAEMMLE NOHO // 31 films – 37 days //