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The Annette Bening Bio

The Annette Bening Review –

by Nate Lee

Best Film:

American President / American Beauty

Even more than "Bugsy," the two "American" films just wouldn't have been the same without her, especially "President." Michael Douglas was brilliant in it, but, really, Annette was the central character. She delivered the Sorkin lines like they were written for her, and maybe they were. Same with "Bugsy," really: her Virginia Hill was a woman who was determined to be strong and stand up to guys that guys don't stand up to.

Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
The Kids Are All Right (Golden Globe-winning and Oscar-nominated performance as a lesbian mom and wife of Julianne Moore)
The Grifters (Oscar-nominated performance as a con artist and conman John Cusack's girlfriend)
Mrs. Harris (Golden Globe-nominated performance as the jilted lover and murderer of diet doctor Herman Tarnower)
Being Julia (Oscar-nominated and Golden Globe-winning performance as Julia, a famous actress dealing with an unfaithful husband, Jeremy Irons, and an unfaithful lover)
Guilty by Suspicion (wife of a '50s director, Robert De Niro, involved in blacklisting)
Mother and Child (mother of Naomi Watts, who put her up for adoption when she was a child)
In Dreams (a clairvoyant mom out to get killer Robert Downey, Jr.)
American Beauty (Oscar and Golden Globe-nominated and SAG-winning performance as the wife opposite Kevin Spacey, and an uptight yuppie realtor)
Bugsy (Golden Globe-nominated performance as Virginia Hill, title character Warren Beatty's girlfriend)
American President (Golden Globe-nominated performance as Sydney, a lobbyist who falls in love with the President, Michael Douglas)
The Siege (NSA agent opposite FBI agent Denzel Washington and Bruce Willis as a crazed anti-Arab-American general)
Regarding Henry (the patient wife of Harrison Ford, who turns into a child when shot in the head)
Valmont (The Marquise, with Colin Firth, involved in ruining reputations just for the fun of it)
The Real Annette Bening:
The American President

Besides being a well-known Democrat and an intelligent spokesman for her causes, she wrestled a very powerful man to the altar by (supposedly) standing her ground and not being the usual (as far as Beatty is concerned) pushover. The epilogue is that she is now a devoted mom as well.
Acting Style:
Smart, sexy, in your face. Plays a lot of strong women and some a little too strong. Good and believable as a real villain as opposed to a comic villain like her colleague, Michelle Pfeiffer. Not as comfortable getting down as Pfeiffer is, but better at playing the polished upper-middle class.
Bits and Quirks:
Fast talking. Works the eyes, especially widening them, with or without the famous smirk. Also a hard-core starer. Usually a little stiff, with arched back.
Great Scenes:
Regarding Henry

> Overhearing her friends insult her and husband Harrison Ford
> Kissing Ford, standing on the park bench when friends walk by
> With Ford, gets daughter Rachel out of the school she doesn't like

The Kids Are All Right

> Having sex with Julianne Moore
> The dinner scene with Paul
> Chasing off Mark Ruffalo
> Discovering that Julianne is cheating on her with Ruffalo

American Beauty

> The dinner table scene, over the asparagus
> Being caught by husband Spacey, making out in the car
> Cleaning up the house for sale
> Slapping herself for crying


> The "jerk yourself a soda" line on the set
> Beatty throws her brother through a window, then chases her around the house
> Fighting over their past loves, then making love at the dinner table

American President

> Shooting off her mouth and being overheard by Michael Douglas as the President
> Jogs into the West Wing just as Douglas is looking for her
> Thinks Douglas is a prank call when he calls her