Top Best Actress Oscars 2011: Annette Bening, Nicole Kidman, Jennifer Lawrence, Natalie Portman and Michelle Williams

The Academy Awards nominations have been announced on January 25 and the list revealed some of the finest actresses in Hollywood battling for the coveted statuette. Before the long-awaited ceremony takes place, InRumor challenges you to have a guess at this year’s candidates for Best Actress.

Annette Bening in “The Kids Are All Right”


Three-time Oscar-nominated (The Grifters, American Beauty, Being Julia), Bening is seen gives powerful interpretations. Her performance in “The Kids Are All Right” is an example. Her character is strong, sober but significant, and the film is highly appreciated. She’s a favorite this year.

Critic David Edelstein: “Annette Bening has a genius for a kind of ‘existential’ acting—for illuminating the chink (or moat, or abyss) between a person’s front and the quivering creature underneath, desperately trying to hold the mask in place.”

Nicole Kidman in “Rabbit Hole”


Nicole is no stranger to Oscar nominations but it was her performance in The Hours that garnered her first Academy Award for Best Actress. Rabbit Hole has received positive reviews in particular for Kidman and Wiest’s performances. Noted as Kidman’s best dramatic performance to date, many critics say Kidman is award-worthy in her work.

Critic Kirk Honeycutt: “Kidman grabs the central focus of the story as the more distraught of the two. The performance is riveting because she essentially plays the entire film at two levels, the surface everyday life and then what is turning over and over again in her mind.”

Jennifer Lawrence in “Winter’s Bone”


A newcomer of the year, Jennifer Lawrence takes the lead role, frequently cited as a “breakout performance”, in Debra Granik’s Winter’s Bone. The film is considered Lawrence’s breakthrough performance, seen as strong, compelling and apt for a statuette.

Critic Peter Travers: “In Lawrence, Granik has found just the right young actress to inhabit Ree. Her performance is more than acting, it’s a gathering storm.”

Natalie Portman in “Black Swan”


Nominated in the past for Best Supporting Actress for Closer, Portman hasn’t had until now a leading role that would allow her to flirt with the Oscar race for Best Actress. She has done that now with “Black Swan”, by director Darren Aronofsky. The film is applauded by many critics for the excellent performance of Natalie Portman. Many experts are already seeing the next favorite at the Oscars.

Critic David Edwards: “While the film is near-perfect, it’s a tribute to Portman that she outshines everyone else as the frail, brittle ballerina who is slowly but surely losing it.”

Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine”


Nominated in 2006 for Best Supporting Actress for Brokeback Mountain, Michelle Williams comes out of a success (Shutter Island) and is carried by the buzz of Blue Valentine. Her performance in Blue Valentine is noteworthy for its intensity as well as her ability to render inner experience in detail.

Critic Catherine Bray: A rarely cheery but carefully crafted look at flawed and all-too human behavior, worth seeing for Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling’s sincere, intelligent performances.

[poll id=”164″]