1. Amy Adams (5)- Adams was #1 in 2014 in what is always a tight race for the top slot with these familiar names. Oscar nom or not she gives one of the year’s best performances in one of the year’s best films in arrival. The great performance in nocturnal animals is just a bonus and adds to her body of work. Oddly enough Arrival may be her first solo lead in a top 10 film- something very worthy of praise (it doesn’t happen often enough for female actresses- even great ones- Streep hasn’t had one since 1985).
  2. Emma Stone (new)- Alright some may balk at Stone rocketing so far up this list but with this and Birdman she’s been superb in two of the decade’s top 10 films. The only other actor you can say that about, of either sex, is Leonardo DiCaprio… (drop the mic)….
  3. Jessica Chastain (1)- Nothing of note in 2016 but she still has 8 archiveable films this decade.
  4. Marion Cotillard (2)- Like Chastain she had nothing of note in 2016 but has been so superb and prolific this decade.
  5. Greta Gerwig (8)- Gerwig was 8th last year and adds 20th Century Women, Maggie’s Plan, and Jackie to the resume. She isn’t given much to do in Jackie but she’s marvelous in the first two.
  6. Scarlett Johansson (7)- She adds Civil War and Hail Caesar this year to fill out her resume even more. Neither match one of Gerwig’s two performances but she’s good enough to move up a slot.
  7. Cate Blanchett (3)- Cate fell hard this year with nothing of note.
  8. Charlize Theron (4)- I had a hard time placing Theron- I’d be in the minority here having her this high still but I put so much stock in last year’s mad max fury road
  9. Michelle Williams (new)- After being a staple on this list from 2009-2015 Williams fell off last year. She’s breathtaking in her small role in Manchester by the sea and adds certain women in 2016 as well.
  10. Natalie Portman (new)- Like Williams,Portman went from a staple earlier in the decade after black swan to fall off the list last year. She’s wonderful in Jackie and happy to see her back on this list.

****Honorable mention

  • Elle Fanning- Fanning is absolutely wonderful in two borderline top 10 films this year: neon demon and 20th century women.
  • Jennifer Lawrence– white hot start to the decade but nothing to add to the archives in 2014, 2015, and now 2016
  • Rooney Mara– drops from being #9 last year with nothing of note here in 2016
  • Kristen Stewart- Café Society and Certain Women in 2016. Stewart continues her stellar work
  • Tilda Swinton  6 archiveable films in the last 5 years. She adds a bigger slash and hail Caesar to an impressive resume
  • Alicia VikanderThe light between oceans is enough to keep her momentum afloat.

*****fell off last year’s list

  • Naomi Watts (#10)
  • Brie Larson (HM)
  • Saoirse Ronan (HM)