Howard Beale

The 10 Most Powerful Movie Performances of All Time

By Andreas Babiolakis


A performance needs everything from subtlety to command. That is true, because a flat, one-dimensional performance just will not cut it when it comes to being believable and tangible. All of these following performances have small nuances to them, yet we are going to focus on their strengths that lie in how gravitational they are.

When these characters want to take charge (and they do so often), you are gripped to every single word. You will find speeches, confessions, and monologues galore here. You will find self conflict and major transformations. You will find some obvious choices here, because all of these ten picks clearly left their mark on the history of cinema. Here are ten of the best powerful movie performances of all time.

10. Peter Finch – Network


In the late-Peter Finch’s final role (he was posthumously awarded an Academy Award for Best Actor), he played the highly complicated Howard Beale in the unfortunately prophetic satire Network. Beale starts getting tired of his predicaments and loses it on live television. He becomes something of a new world philosopher that channels to the tv-viewing crowd, and his voice booms and quivers with realization.

He also slowly deteriorates mentally, and it shows through Beale’s glazed-over eyes. He may spout cautions, but he himself is in deep trouble. He passes out after his near-ascending levels of preaching, and it’s at that point of sudden resolution that you realize just how manic he just was. Finch’s Beale is as commanding with his monologues as he is insane, all while playing off both sides at the exact same time convincingly. You believe him, and you also fear for him.

9. Kathryn Hepburn – The Lion in Winter

The Lion in Winter

Well someone from the incredibly melodramatic The → continue…

From:: Taste Of Cinema