Ellen Page is one of Hollywood’s most dynamic actresses. Over the course of her career, we’ve seen her grow up and continue to make her mark in entertainment. For all that however it still feels as though she doesn’t stand out as much as anyone else and it could be that this is the way she likes it. Or it could be that’s just her style. But you can’t deny her well-rounded performances in her movies that you can’t help but think that anyone else might not have been the right person for such characters.
Here are some of her movies with great performances that you should catch up on!
Hard Candy (2005)
Directed by David Slade, Ellen Page portrays Hayley, a pre-teen who lures Jeff, a thirty two year old photographer (Patrick Wilson) to meet her despite their age difference. Upon meeting, she drugs his drink and quickly has him strapped down and helpless – to torture him so he’ll admit to being a paedophile. Ellen offered a really good and strong lead performances. With such an innocent face, she remains consistently convincing to her role which is both powerful and chilling.
You kind of expect your kids to learn hard lessons in life, but getting pregnant is one of those that you’d rather they learn later on. Such is not the case in this movie where Ellen’s performance as the titular Juno MacGuff, a hilarious, sardonic and unapologetically opinionated 16 year old falls pregnant after sleeping with her best friend, Paulie Bleeker (Michael Cera). Having admired her performance in “Hard Candy”, director Jason Reitman cast Ellen in the lead role. Juno received highly positive reviews from critics and became a breakthrough movie for Ellen.
The Umbrella Academy (2019– )
Portraying Vanya Hargreeves aka Number Seven, Ellen is a part of a family of seven foster children adopted as infants and the only one who isn’t tapped to be in their squad of crime-fighting superhero kids. Even though she plays a character known for not having any powers, Ellen put in a superhuman effort to develop at least one capability: playing the violin. “For me on a personal level, I have to say this is one of my favorite characters I’ve ever gotten to play,” Ellen says. Sure, her “ordinary” character has made her stand out in the lot of characters.
Ellen explores the darker side of motherhood in this movie. A drunken mess mother Carolyn (Tammy Blanchard) is hiding out from her unhappy marriage in a luxury hotel. Disinterested in parenting, she leaves her child under Tallulah’s (Ellen Page) care, mistaking her for hotel babysitting staff. Tallulah promptly steals Carolyn’s cash, yet just as quickly begins mommying the baby. Her performance reveals complex layers of conflicted maternal impulses and selfishness as she conveys her emotions well.
Whip It (2009)
Think “Juno”, but with roller skates instead of teen pregnancy. This time around Ellen learned to skate in order to play Bliss Cavendar, a teenage girl from Texas, who is desperate to escape from the world of mother-daughter beauty pageants. Bliss’ rebellion takes her to the city of Austin, where she finds an all-female roller derby league. Bliss is soon juggling playing for the ‘Hurl Scouts’ with pageant commitments. Ellen reportedly gave up the lead role in Sam Raimi’s “Drag Me to Hell” in order to make “Whip It.” We think she made the right decision.
In the stunningly visual and mind-bending Christopher Nolan film, it follows a professional thief named Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio), who alongside his specialists, isn’t hired to steal anything but rather implant an idea in a mind through dream traveling technology. Ellen plays Ariadne, a young architectural student brought into the project to be an architect of dreams. She is given no real personality, but she sure is gifted with screen presence. Her life, her emotions, flicker across her face in an surging wave, making whatever she says seem important and justified.