75 Best Film Performances of 2012

There were only a handful of iconic film performances in 2012, but there were a good number of excellent performances, often in smaller roles. I thought it’d be fun to make a list of the best 75 performances from films that I saw in 2012. Below are my picks. If there are other noteworthy performances that you think should be on here, let me know in the comments section!

75) Tom Holland, The Impossible
74) Tilda Swinton, Moonrise Kingdom
73) Susan Sarandon, Arbitrage
72) Jennifer Ehle, Zero Dark Thirty
71) Dwight Henry, Beasts of the Southern Wild
70) Mark Duplass, Your Sister’s Sister
69) Tom Hardy, Lawless
68) Noomi Rapace, Prometheus
67) Scoot McNairy, Killing Them Softly
66) Gina Carano, Haywire
65) Bruce Willis, Looper
64) Tom Hanks, Cloud Atlas
63) Anders Danielsen Lie, Oslo, August 31
62) Shirley MacLaine, Bernie
61) Edward Norton, Moonrise Kingdom
60) Kaya Scodelario, Wuthering Heights
59) Isabelle Huppert, Amour
58) Ray Liotta, Killing Them Softly
57) Alan Arkin, Argo
56) Eddie Redmayne, Les Miserables
55) Sam Riley, On the Road 
54) Daniel Craig, Skyfall
53) Tom Hardy, The Dark Knight Rises
52) Bruce Willis, Moonrise Kingdom
51) Suraj Sharma, Life of Pi
50) Mark Ruffalo, The Avengers
49) Robert Pattinson, Cosmopolis
48) Jude Law, Anna Karenina
47) Jim Broadbent, Cloud Atlas
46) Quvenzhane Wallis, Beasts of the Southern Wild
45) Christian Bale, The Dark Knight Rises
44) Rosemarie DeWitt, My Sister’s Sister
43) Jamie Foxx, Django Unchained
42) Matthias Schoenaerts, Rust & Bone
41) Brad Pitt, Killing Them Softly
40) Muhammet Uzuner, Once Upon a Time in Anatolia
39) Emily Blunt, Looper
38) Greta Gerwig, Damsels in Distress
37) Anne Hathaway, The Dark Knight Rises
36) Michael Caine, The Dark Knight Rises
35) Thomas Doret, The Kid With the Bike
34) Judi Dench, Skyfall
33) Garrett Hedlund, On the Road
32) Samuel L. Jackson, Django Unchained
31) Jennifer Lawrence, Silver Linings Playbook
30) Ewan McGregor, The Impossible
29) Hugh Jackman, Les Miserables
28) Keira Knightley, Anna Karenina
27) James Howson, Wuthering Heights
26) Bradley Cooper, Silver Linings Playbook
25) Richard Gere, Arbitrage
24) Guy Pearce, Lawless
23) Rachel Weisz, The Deep Blue Sea
22) Anne Hathaway, Les Miserables
21) Sally Field, Lincoln
20) Amy Adams, The Master
19) Leonardo DiCaprio, Django Unchained
18) Denzel Washington, Flight
17) Jean-Louis Trintignant, Amour
16) James Gandolfini, Killing Them Softly
15) Michael Fassbender, Prometheus
14) Liam Neeson, The Grey
13) Christoph Waltz, Django Unchained
12) Jessica Chastain, Zero Dark Thirty
11) Javier Bardem, Skyfall
10) Cecile De France, The Kid With the Bike
9) Naomi Watts, The Impossible
8) Jack Black, Bernie
7) Tommy Lee Jones, Lincoln
6) Marion Cotillard, Rust & Bone
5) Philip Seymour Hoffman, The Master
4) Denis Lavant, Holy Motors
3) Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
2) Joaquin Phoenix, The Master
1) Daniel Day Lewis, Lincoln

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3 responses to “75 Best Film Performances of 2012

  1. Great list. I’d probably have Anne Hathaway in “TDKR” listed higher, as well as Suraj Sharma in “Life of Pi.” Jack Black in “Bernie” is definitely the best surprise performance of the year. Despite my love for Daniel Day Lewis, I have yet to see “Lincoln,” so Joaquin Phoenix would top my own list.

  2. How about Audrey Plaza in Safety Not Guarenteed? I didn’t get to see much this year but her performance stuck out to me. Thanks for your list and I look forward to seeing some of these when I get a chance.

  3. Pingback: Best Films of 2012 | The Search

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