Do The Right Thing

For the last eight months too many people have been asleep regarding Olivia Colman‘s shattering performance in Paddy Considine‘s Tyrannosaur (Strand, 11.18). Awards-season watchers have to be responsible and stop ignoring the clamor. I haven’t seen a lead female performance this year that comes close to matching Colman’s in terms of sensitivity, raw honesty and searing emotional exposure. It really is the shit.

It would be criminal to overlook Tyrannosaur for Colman’s sake alone. You can’t call yourself a serious entertainment journalist or an award-season columnist and not see it and give her your full consideration. Colman is this year’s Lesley Manville, only more so.

Colman plays Hannah, a 30ish middle-class wife dealing with a battering husband and an alcohol issue to boot, running a second-hand Christian charity shop in Leeds. The story is about her character befriending Joseph (Peter Mullan), a 50ish divorcee with a massive anger and alcohol problem, and their bond slowly developing as Hannah’s issues with her revolting prick of a husband (Eddie Marsan) come to a head. It sounds rough, but it’s finally a movie about tenderness.

There mignt not be much money to support Colman making a bid for awards attention, or none to speak of. She’d have to hire a p.r. firm and tour around, etc.. Strand is a very budget-conscious distributor so there won’t be much help on that end. But Colman really kills in this film, and you can’t just turn your head and pretend she’s not there or that she hasn’t delivered a legendary performance.

(l. to r.) Paddy Considine, Peter Mullan, Olivia Colman.
  • cyanic

    Tyne Daly and Mackenzie Phillips

  • Colin

    Stands like this for little-seen films are why I read Hollywood Elsewhere.

  • moorish

    Good for Colman. For a long time in the UK she’s been known for comedic roles (she’s a regular on ‘POV sitcom’ Peep Show and appeared in a lot of other stuff featuring Peep Show stars David Mitchell and Robert Webb), but she’s always seemed to have real chops. Seeing Tyrannosaur at BFI preview soon, really looking forward to it.

  • Hallick

    “Tyne Daly and Mackenzie Phillips”

    A young Frances De La Tour (Rising Damp)

  • K. Bowen

    I was just about to come here and tease you with “The New Leslie Manville!”

    Jacki Weaver!!!!!!

    Does Olivia Colman set the screen ablaze?

  • a_loco

    Was rather impressed by Colman and the film in general, but was moreso impressed by Mullan, who I think would win if there were any sort of campaign behind him.

    Also, Paddy C looks like a Grade A douche in that photo.

  • worrywort

    If the team behind Tyrannosaur runs their campaign like Maria Full of Grace‘s, then Colman might get a nod.

  • lise

    Couldn’t agree more. This was my favourite film at TIFF this year and those performances are the best I’ve seen in a very long time. She was in one particular scene that is now one of my favourite scenes of all time — and all due to her performance.