1991 was a great year for movies and actresses. Films like Thelma & Louise and Friend Green Tomatoes was almost completely about women and women were the stars of the film. In one film alone 3 of my favorite actresses star. So for the list of 1991 and my favorite actresses, here we go…
#10) Christina Applegate as Sue Ellen Crandell in Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead: I know it’s a lame movie, but I love it! Not only have it seen it umpteen million times I love Christina in this. Fresh in her role as Kelli Bundy in TV’s Married With Children, she gave us this movie and showed us what she can do. Not an Oscar worthy performance, but I really think she is highly under-rated in Hollywood. I love this film and I love her in it!
#9) Diane Ladd as Mother in Rambling Rose: Diane Ladd is one of premiere actresses in Hollywood. Who can forget her portrayal as Flo in Alice, but my favorite role is her Oscar nominated role in Rambling Rose as her real life Daughter’s (Laura Dern) mother as the matriarch of the conservative clan who does everything in her power to make sure the ignorant and self-righteous men around her don’t harm the charming and “rambling” girl.
#8) Mercedes Ruehl as Anne Napolitano in The Fisher King: A very real and illuminating role and the first time I really recall her in a film as a very realistic portrait of a woman so in love with a loser that she’ll excuse his endless faults. Though I doubt most women in those circumstances are as strong-willed as Anne seems to be. Mercedes won an Oscar for this role.
#7) Mary Stuart Masterson as Idgie Threadgoode in Fried Green Tomatoes: The acting in this film is exceptional. Mary Stuart Masterson and Mary Louise Parker carry the bulk of the acting load. They are fantastic. The relationship between these very different young women is complex and satisfying. Some say they had a lesbian relationship, but who cares? Masterson was masterful and brought this great story out in a why we all understood her.
#6 & #5) Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon as and in Thelma and Louise: This was one of the biggest hits of 1991, and the ULTIMATE chick flick. Both Davis and Sarandon gave performances of their careers.
#4) Bette Midler as Dixie Leonard in For the Boys: As an ultimate showgirl, and singer, dancer, Midler is outstanding. She delivers a fine performance as the embittered Dixie Leonard who has seen it all in fifty odd years in the business. She layers her performance with emotion after emotion in only the way Midler can. One of her finest roles.
#3) Kathy Bates as Evelyn Couch in Fried Green Tomatoes: Kathy Bates…what can I say about this woman that I haven’t already said. She is one of the finest actresses of our generation, and her role as the frustrated housewife, Evelyn who happens to stop by the Nursing home to visit an Old Lady, and it changes her life. Kathy is pivotal in this role, but not a lead, but as a reason. She is comedic, dramatic and farcical all in one. The best scene in the film is Kathy’s when a shopper takes her parking spot at the grocery.
#2) Jodie Foster as Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs: A now classic film and a classic role, played by one of our very own classic stars. Josie Foster gave a performance of a lifetime in this role as a young FBI cadet that must interview a serial killer to catch another and allows their lives to intertwine in a way she never dared to dream. Jodie won the Best Actress Oscar for this performance.
#1) Jessica Tandy as Ninny Threadgoode in Fried Green Tomatoes: Talk about classic. Jessica Tandy was the ultimate classic leading lady and star of the theater and film. Her role in this great story telling film, she is again spectacular. Real, down to earth, never over-acted but just perfectly fit. When she died we lost a great talent in Hollywood.