The Best Performances of 2022: Awards Season Favorites and Beyond

If history gets things right, sometime far in the future there will be a monument erected in tribute to Colin Farrell‘s eyebrows. Particularly, to their extraordinary mobility and expression as demonstrated in this year’s The Banshees of Inisherin. As the perpetually bewildered nice guy Pádraic, resident of a small Irish village, Farrell perfectly portrays a man who just adores his sister, wants to hang out with a miniature donkey named Jenny, wears very excellent sweaters, and just doesn’t get why his friend Colm (Brendan Gleeson) suddenly would rather maim himself than hang out with him anymore. Director Martin McDonagh‘s latest offering works partly on the power of Farrell’s all-in performance—he’s just as confused as the audience is, and his hurt-turned-righteous indignation is also our righteous indignation. Those brows: they furrow, they frown, they raise to the stormy Irish skies, and they’re allowing us to buy into the emotion and drama of a very human story in a life far different than any we know. —Kase Wickman

The Core Friend Groups of Fire Island and Bodies Bodies Bodies

Courtesy of A24

Yes, yes, we know. Gender is a social construct. But the mostly male friend group in Fire Island (Tomas Matos, who played Keegan, identifies as non-binary) and the girls of Bodies, Bodies, Bodies deserve a special shout-out for their fantastic performances in these two summer flicks. Both films relied on the chemistry between the members of its central friend group—the audience buying that these are old, real relationships. And both casts—Matos, Matt RogersBowen YangJoel Kim BoosterMargaret Cho, and Torian Miller in Fire IslandRachel SennottMyha’la HerroldAmandla StenbergChase Sui Wonders, and Maria Bakalova in Bodies, Bodies, Bodies—sold that feeling with aplomb. Whether you were watching Matos and Rogers break into their pitch-perfect Marisa Tomei impressions, or Sennott and Herrold have a screaming match over a podcast, you never doubted the depths and contours of these fictional relationships, whether they were coming closer together or falling apart. In 2023, we’d positively die for a crossover film between these two friend groups (think Girls’ iconic “Beach House” episode), except for the fact that (spoiler alert) most of the girls in Bodies, Bodies, Bodies don’t make it out of the film alive 🙁 – Chris Murphy

Devin Halbal and Terri Joe of TikTok fame

TikTok content

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The endless feed of skits, jokes, and slices of daily life on TikTok makes it almost impossible to break through a sea of noise. But Devin Halbal, also known as @hal.baddie, is a guiding light. Armed with a humble selfie stick, Halbal shares inspiration bulletinsmini travel vlogs, and doll check-ins that are both undeniably delightful and defiantly triumphant. Everyone else can stop trying: New York City already has its It Girl. The only other voice that broke through the bedlam was that of Terri Joe, the alter ego of user _itzpsyiconic_, who trades barbs with Doja CatMadonna, and other strangers all the while trying not to break their acerbic, southern Christian persona in Omegle-style setups. It’s irreverent, it’s offensive, it’s hilarious, it might be performance art, and I can’t stop watching. —Mark Alan Burger

Keke Palmer, Nope


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