As I'm sure you already know and are celebrating.....On THIS day, 25 years ago, Julianne Moore appeared on screen for the first time. (Okay, it was TV, on USA, in a show no one has ever heard of, but a screen is a screen.)
When I found out my friend A.B. is an obsessive Julianne Moore fan, it seemed like a good idea to collaborate on a list of Top Ten Moore films. You know I take this stuff seriously. I like to start with the full working credits and winnow down the list, making sure nothing gets overlooked.
A.B. was inclined to take a......less systematic approach. She started declaring "#1 is X....#2 is Y..." with ABSOLUTE CONVICTION before I could even get her the full list!
I quickly ascertained that our two different approaches (myself logical, reasonable, objective, A.B.....uh, a woman) would never never produce an agreed-upon list. Therefore, I have turned over the actual decision making to her, while I limit myself to the occasional snarky comment. (Also all the work.)
A.B. tried to judge the "movie" more than the performance, since, as she put it, "Julianne Moore can do no wrong ever. In fact, we should beBFF's! Tell Julianne to call me!"
Even under her "rules," I had to rag on some of her choices; not so much what made the list, but what got left out. I would have put in THE FUGITIVE, SURVIVING PICASSO, THE LOST WORLD and COOKIE'S FORTUNE. (A.B.'s excuse for omitting Julianne's turn as a skeptical surgeon in THE FUGITIVE is that the role amounts to little more than a cameo, but I would point you to #10 and #8 on her list. The logic of women.....)
Anyway, without further ado....
#10 THE HAND THAT ROCKS THE CRADLE - "She was a great bitch and she died by having a greenhouse fall on her I believe. (The way I have always hope to go.)"
[Hyperion's Note: I couldn't find any good pictures for this movie, so I used that painting.]
#9 LAWS OF ATTRACTION - "It is mildly amusing and if I remember correctly there is a drink called Goat Balls in it. And we know the thing I have for goats ..."
[Hyperion's Note: I found lots of good pictures for this movie, but I wanted to use the second painting. Don't judge me.]
#8 THE BIG LEBOWSKI - "It just makes me laugh and I love that she does those kind of movies along with the highbrow."
[Hyperion's Note: I've tried to watch this movie like 10 times and have never been able to get into it. There are people who SWEAR by this movie. Maybe it's just hit-or-miss with the Coen Brothers and me. I loved O BROTHER WHERE ART THOU and NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN, while I hated FARGO with all my heart. Or maybe it's because I've never smoked pot.]
#7 THE HOURS - "She was the best thing in that mess."
[Hyperion's Note - THE HOURS is one of those achingly beautiful movies that everyone agrees is great but no one likes to watch. I agree with A.B., though: they should have just made the whole movie about Julianne Moore's character.]
#6 THE END OF THE AFFAIR - "I am a sucker for melodrama and it was lovely."
#5 NINE MONTHS - "Its charming and sweet and she is so talented that she can do Safe and turn around and do NINE MONTHS equally well."
[Hyperion's Note: When NINE MONTHS came out I was still in love with Hugh Grant, left over from FOUR WEDDINGS, and so I loved this movie, Divine Brown notwithstanding. Now that my love for Hugh has faded I can barely stand it.]
#4 SAFE - "So intense and she's so sad and confused in it .... and to think that she made Safe and Nine Months in the same year amazes me."
#3 SHORT CUTS - "It took balls to do a whole scene with her bush out....and it was what made me fall so in love with her."
[Hyperion's Note: Julianne Moore is naked an awful lot in her movies. Words need to be said about that, and A.B.'s comment makes this a good spot. I heard Moore talk about her on-screen nudity somewhere, but I can't find the quote, so I'm paraphrasing from memory.
Basically Moore's contention is that she doesn't mind nudity because it's the "purest" form of acting. When her clothes are off there is nowhere to hide from the audience, and that makes her vulnerable and (in her opinion) brings out her best work. I ran this theory by my mom once, and she was very skeptical, but if you watch Moore's films, I think you have to admit there is a marked lack of sexuality and eroticism in the nude scenes, so maybe she's being straight.
(I am writing this paragraph at the end, so A.B. didn't get to approve it, but I can just see her reading it now and getting offended at the suggestion that I MIGHT have been contemplating doubting Saint Julianne's word.)
Also: not for nothing, but just because Julianne Moore's nude scenes in her movies aren't hot, doesn't mean she can't be hot while naked. Google "Julianne Moore naked" and remember I told you that the next time you think I never give you anything. Okay, back to the list.]
#2 FAR FROM HEAVEN - "Because you could see how much Todd Haynes LOVED the Douglas Sirk melodrama in every frame of the film and she perfectly captured that type of heroine."
and the number one Julianne Moore movies according to A.B. is.....
#1 BOOGIE NIGHTS - "This is #1 because that movie was filled with awesome performances and I still remember every one of her scenes and she wasn't even the star."
All Movie titles in the list link to that page on IMDB. See Julianne Moore' full list of credits.
PS - This list almost didn't happen. Over on my blog, I write about how Facebook and Bear saved the day at the last minute....sorta.
PPS - A.B. absolutely hates Verdana Font. That'll teach her to leave out THE FUGITIVE!!!!