Best Actress: Kate Winslet's Moment

Intense, ambitious and only slightly panicked, Kate Winslet is the finest actress of her generation.

Mario Anzuoni / Reuters / Corbis

Kate Winslet

It's 11 days before the Academy Awards, and Kate Winslet is giving her third best performance of the year. The occasion is a lunch at New York City's Oak Room at which 100 or so invited guests have gathered to honor her performance in Stephen Daldry's The Reader. This particular publicity event, orchestrated in the 26th mile of the Oscar marathon, has multiple purposes: it's designed to entice any wavering voters in the few days before the last postmark lands on the last ballot. It's also intended to defuse complaints that the movie's treatment of the Holocaust is too...

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