1. . Rinko Kikuchi as Chieko in Babel: It's always impressive when an actress gives a good performance without saying a word, but Kikuchi takes it to a whole other level. She is heartbreaking and haunting as a girl shattered by the death of her mother and unable to communicate either verbally or emotionally with anyone. Great performance in an excellent film.
2. Cate Blanchett as Sheba Hart in Notes On A Scandal: Of course, Judi Dench delivers one of the best performances of the last decade, but Cate Blanchett is able to more then hold her own as Sheba. She conveys Sheba's fears, passions, and guilt brilliantly and it's my favorite performance by Blanchett so far.
3. Adriana Barraza as Amelia in Babel: Bararzza is very effective and heartbreaking as Amelia. Her last scenes are the highlight of her performance of course, but she is very earthy and really impressive. She, like Kikuchi, adds a lot to Babel.
4. Abigal Breslin as Olive Hoover in Little Miss Sunshine: What a wonderful performance! Many people have said it, but she is the heart of Little Miss Sunshine! Very funny, but also surprisingly sad at times. And that dance number! Hilarious!
5. Jenniffer Hudson as Effie White in Dreamgirls: I guess I should rewatch Dreamgirls, but on the first time I was impressed by Hudson, but when I watched some of it on TV, I was unimpressed. I understand that Effie is a stage diva, but it seems like Hudson only plays her like a bitch. And it's seems pretty one note. Her "And I'm telling you I'm not going" is great (Even though I think Jeniffer Holliday's version is better), but it doesn't save her.
What do you think of the nominees? Who is your choice? How would you rank them?