What a year it's been for bad ass, independent women! Feminists rejoice! It's admittedly a pleasant change of pace to see so many strong, self-sufficient female characters for once. Hollywood's very much a male-dominated industry, but if this year is any indication of things to come, women need not worry about that much longer. The most remarkable thing about this list of women is that 4 of them are newcomers who are now sure to be breakout stars. Here are my top 5 favorite women of 2015 who proved the women are worthy of equal pay and recognition.
And the Nominees Are...
It's a pretty fascinating and rare phenomenon to see a woman upstage an industry leading legend like Tom Cruise, but that's precisely the mission that Rebecca Ferguson accomplished in Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation. Her incredibly physical performance instantly catapults her towards the top of the list of the all-time best female movie spies.
Theron is majestic as the desperate, battle-worn woman warrior Imperator Furiosa in Mad Max: Fury Road. She exudes a longing and desperation for a better life, away from the dreaded reach of her master Immortan Joe. Furiosa may be emotionally and physically depleted, but she's not without hope. Theron gives us a character we can root for, as we sympathize with her struggle.
I didn't expect Rey to have such a substantial role in The Force Awakens, nor did I anticipate her being such a fighter. Instantly a breakout star with her performance as Rey, Daisy Ridley has won the hearts of movie fans across the globe. She possesses intelligence, skill, and integrity. All fitting qualities for a future jedi. I have a good feeling about this one!
Brie Larson puts herself on the map for good with her riveting performance in Room. She brilliantly portrays the psychological and emotional trauma of being the victim of her terrifying and tragic situation. She must fight to keep herself together so she can give her son the best life possible despite them both living in captivity, while trying to devise ways for them to escape.
What I admired most about Bryce Dallas Howard's performance as Claire was her believable transformation over the course of the film (well, that and outrunning a T-Rex in heels). She is able to break free from her unlikable inhuman first impression and evolve into a woman who is willing to own her mistakes and attempt to make up for them.
And the Winner Is...
Not only is Brie Larson my choice for Favorite Actress of 2015, but I think she may have actually given the single greatest overall performance of 2015, across all categories. Before Room, I had never even heard of her, but after a performance like this, I don't think I'll ever in my life forget her. She does such an exemplary job in depicting her character's struggles and sacrifices, and shows the extreme lengths a mother will go to in order to protect her children from harm as well as the horrors of the world. I'd love to say more but to prevent spoilers I instead encourage you to watch Room and see it for yourselves!