best film: Rosemary’s Baby. Is it really better than Hannah and Her Sisters? I’m not sure- Crimes and Misdemeanors isn’t far behind either. In the last 10 years both Hannah and Rosemary’s Baby have been on (and sometimes slightly off) my top 100 of all-time so both are great choices for an actor’s best film. Polanski’s masterpiece focuses on Farrow so that’s another good tie-breaker.

best performance:  Rosemary’s Baby. It’s one of the all-time most underrated performances (coming from perhaps the all-time most underrated actress). Farrow goes through a profound physical and psychological transformation during the film. She’s paranoid (or appears so), warm, terrified. The scenes of her panicked, on the run, in the final hour puts her work here up there with the best female performances of the entire 1960’s.

stylistic innovations/traits:  Farrow has a one/two punch and it’s a strong case. On one hand she has a great lead performance in a giant Masterpiece. Check. She also has a large body of work with her one-time companion and husband Woody Allen .  She did a staggering amount of good work with Woody from 1982 to 1992. Like him or not Woody is one of the great directors of women and this period with Farrow was incredibly rich with artistic experimentation. Look at her performances- her 8th best performance might be The Great Gatsby—9th might be Alice or Another Woman? That’s incredible.  Her work in say Purple Rose, Husbands and Wives and Broadway Danny Rose show such range.

directors worked with:  Woody Allen (11) and then Rosemary’s Baby with Polanski of course

Top 5 Performances:

  1. Rosemary’s Baby
  2. The Purple Rose of Cairo
  3. Husbands and Wives
  4. Broadway Danny Rose
  5. Hannah and Her Sisters

Archiveable films

1968- Rosemary’s Baby
1974- The Great Gatsby
1982- A Midsummer’s Night Sex Comedy
1983- Zelig
1984- Broadway Danny Rose
1985- The Purple Rose of Cairo
1986- Hannah and Her Sisters
1987- Radio Days
1987- September
1988- Another Woman
1989- Crimes and Misdemeanors
1990- Alice
1992- Husband and Wives