A Twitter tournament produces a ranked list of 32 performances by Nicole Kidman.
"With new prestige collaborations with Sofia Coppola (The Beguiled), John Cameron Mitchell (How to Talk to Girls at Parties) and Yorgos Lanthimos (The Killing of a Sacred Deer) on her slate this year"—and let's not forget the forthcoming second season of Jane Campion's Top of the Lake—"a renewed collective appreciation of Kidman’s talents is clearly on the cards," writes Guy Lodge in Variety.
And he spontaneously stoked the flames by launching the #KidmanWorldCup, "a four-day series of bracket-style Twitter polls designed to highlight the range and quality of roles she has played over the last 30-odd years, and to determine which among them film lovers treasure the most." Ultimately, Kidman's performance in Gus Van Sant's black comedy To Die For (1995) edged out her widowed Anna in Jonathan Glazer's Birth (2004). Vocal supporters for the winner included Melanie Lynskey, while Moonlight director Barry Jenkins and Carol screenwriter Phyllis Nagy had been pulling for Birth.
"Some actors, even great ones, are defined by a single performance," wrote Sam Adams at Slate mid-way through the voting, "but Kidman has been so good in so many different ways that it’s almost impossible to choose. How do you measure the naked simplicity of Birth against the heightened artifice of Dogville, or the satirical stylization of To Die For against the soul-scraping honesty of Eyes Wide Shut? What that final four underlines, among other things, is that Kidman has become a movie star without a star persona. There is no Nicole Kidman type."
Going by the number of votes cast in the #KidmanWorldCup for all 32 features in the running, Lena Houst has posted a ranked list of Kidman's onscreen performances.