(Written for Filmoria)
With the first instalment of the final Hunger Games film, Mockingjay: Part 1, being released this month, on the 20th November, we’re all looking forward to seeing the beautiful Jennifer Lawrence reprise her role as the fierce heroine Katniss Everdeen.
With The Hunger Games franchise establishing Lawrence as the highest-grossing action heroine of all time, it’s her first roles in the TBS sitcom The Bill Engvall Show and the independent films The Burning Plain and Winter’s Bone, for which she received her first Academy Award nomination, that made her an actress to keep an eye on.
Since then, Lawrence has won an Academy Award, two Golden Globes, and a BAFTA, as well as a number of other awards, with Rolling Stone commenting in 2012 that she is “the most talented young actress in America”.
From stumbling up the stairs after winning her first Oscar for her role in Silver Linings Playbook to her adorable honesty and natural wit in interviews, Lawrence is undeniably one of the best actresses around at the minute. So let’s take a look at five of her best performances.
5. House At The End of The Street (2012)
After the world fell for Lawrence with her performance in the first Hunger Games film, we all knew that she’d soon be appearing in a horror film whilst she still had her teenage naivety. That and everybody wanted to see her running around in a tight tank top. But these were the days when we weren’t fully aware of the talent that Lawrence had. Sure, we knew she was good. But House At The End of The Street proved that she was a versatile actor. The film itself didn’t do much for her career as it was your basic run of the mill horror, but it did show us that there was a lot more to look forward to.
4. X-Men: First Class (2010) & Days of Future Past (2014)
The latest X-Men franchise has a host of talent including James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender as the leads in the prequel as a young Professor X and Magneto, respectively. Lawrence fit into the cast perfectly as a young Raven/Mystique, a sexy blue, mutant shape-shifter, and is a role that made us start paying attention to her outside of The Hunger Games franchise. This is now the second big blockbuster that Lawrence is part of, and we know that we’ll get to see a much darker side to her with her role as the slowly evolving villain that is Mystique over the next few instalments.
3. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
At 22 years old, Silver Linings Playbook earned Lawrence her first award, winning two in total, the Golden Globe and the Academy Award for Best Actress, making her the second-youngest Best Actress winner at the Oscars. Directed by David O. Russell, Silver Linings Playbook was Lawrence’s first on-screen collaboration with Bradley Cooper, and is a role where we got to see her as a twenty-something, stepping into the big world. With the film allowing Lawrence to play her true age, we also got to see more of her natural, playful character, which is a huge reason why many of us are such a big fan of hers.
2. American Hustle (2013)
Lawrence’s second collaboration with Cooper, and winning Lawrence two more awards, the Golden Globe and BAFTA for Best Supporting Actress, American Hustle was where we saw Lawrence really shine. Her role as an alcoholic wife-on-the-side was when we all turned around and thought, “Wow”. We all knew that she had talent and she was an actress that had been impressing us more and more over the years, with three awards to show it, but American Hustle proved her exceptional class, showing that not only was her talent improving, but that it was one that was going to shine for many years to come and build up to an extraordinary career.
1. Winter’s Bone (2010)
Winter’s Bone was Lawrence’s break-out performance, although it wasn’t until The Hunger Games that she gained her worldwide recognition. If you haven’t seen her performance in this film, which is also one of her youngest, then I urge you to immediately, because it’s not only an incredible film but Lawrence deserves the nomination for Best Actress wholeheartedly. Winter’s Bone is a chilling drama, and at 19 years old at the time of filming, Lawrence shows off her pure talent early on.