best film: The problem here for Jane Fonda is not Klute, which is an excellent film and Jane’s best. The problem is the lack of competition for Klute regarding this category. There is not a really good option for that runner-up or second-best film. This category is a weakness for Jane- no doubt about that. Klute is Alan Pakula’s first film in the paranoia trilogy- an important piece of the New Hollywood 1970s American cinema.
best performance: Jane Fonda brilliantly plays Bree Daniels in Klute. Her performance has it all and she walks away (along with director Pakula and director of photography of Gordon Willis) with the film. Donald Sutherland plays the lead (he is John Klute) but it is Fonda who you cannot take your eyes off of. She is terrified with fear in one scene- and then absolutely and supremely confident (not sure an actress has ever been more so) in her big speech about what she does and how she does it. This is an amazing monologue, it won her the Oscar, and it is a big reason why she is so high on this list.
stylistic innovations/traits: Fonda has the depth of filmography on her side for the purposes of ranking on this list. She is now up to sixteen (16) total archiveable films -all pretty substantial with her in solo lead or sharing lead for the most part in at least eleven (11) of the sixteen (16). She had a whopping seven (7) Academy Award nominations. Fonda even took long stretches off in her career for other causes (politics, her workout empire). The downside to Fonda’s case is that she simply is not in many truly great films. As far as her acting chops, she could play both naivety (her back-to-back collaborations with Robert Redford in 1966-67 early on in her career) and then power, strength and poise.
directors worked with: Only Alan Pakula (2) twice, but this list of esteemed directors also includes Sydney Pollack (1), Sidney Lumet (1), Fred Zinnemann (1), Hal Ashby (1), Paolo Sorrentino (1) Arthur Penn (1), and Jean-Luc Godard (1) once. Overall though this category is a bit of a problem for Fonda. The Pakula collaborations in the 1970s are terrific- but even in her work with Lumet, Godard, Penn and Ashby- these just are not their top tier films.
top five performances:
- They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?
- Coming Home
- The China Syndrome
|1965- Cat Ballou|
|1966- The Chase|
|1967- Barefoot in the Park|
|1969- They Shoot Horses Don’t They?|
|1972- Tout Va Bien|
|1978- California Suite|
|1978- Comes a Horseman|
|1978- Coming Home|
|1979- China Syndrome|
|1980- 9 to 5|
|1981- On Golden Pond|
|1986- The Morning After|
I really like her performance in Comes a Horseman(1978). Don’t think many actresses can play that role.
@Malith- thank you for the catch here on Youth
@Jagman- haha hilarious- thank you for the fix help- should be fixed. I’ve made that error before and I am sure I’ll make it again