10 Most Cringeworthy Performances From Otherwise Great Actors

The prequels were not a good time for anyone...

Star Wars Queen Amidala

Finding fame and fortune as a film actor has long been one of the most coveted career paths there is for creative dreamer types. How wonderful we imagine it to be, working with all manner of great writers and directors to create great works of cinema - to say nothing of all that money and adulation that goes with it.

When all is said and done, though, acting's just another job like any other. Some days you show up feeling all inspired and raring to give it your all; other days you're just not feeling it. And, a hell of a lot of the time, the only thing that keeps you going is looking forward to payday.

Even the most well-known, admired actors in the business struggle to bring their A-game every single time. Maybe they've got problems with the script or the director; maybe they've got off-camera issues affecting their work. Or, again, maybe the only reason they signed on in the first place was for the money.

Whatever the reasons may be, even Hollywood's finest fumble the ball from time to time.

10. Sigourney Weaver - A Monster Calls

Star Wars Queen Amidala
Focus Features

Director JA Bayona's 2016 adaptation of Patrick Ness's novel is, in most respects, a triumph. Combining elements of ET and Pan's Labyrinth with a heart-breaking tale of terminal illness, it's compelling, awe-inspiring, and a bona fide tear jerker.

For the most part the film is superbly cast, with a tremendous lead performance from young actor Lewis MacDougall, and equally excellent support from Felicity Jones as his cancer-stricken mother, and Liam Neeson as the gravel-throated tree monster of the title.

However, it is almost impossible to comprehend why Sigourney Weaver was cast in the role of the domineering Grandmother. Obviously the long-standing screen veteran has more than proven her ability and versatility over the decades, but the role has one rather significant requirement which seems to be beyond her: an English accent.

The Manhattan-born actress sticks out like a sore thumb in the humdrum British setting, and it's near-impossible to believe that she's biologically related to MacDougall or Jones. Subsequently, all Weaver's scenes take you right out of the film, souring the carefully constructed atmosphere.

That said, A Monster Calls is still painfully poignant viewing, so perhaps we need that distraction to keep from having a total emotional breakdown.


Ben Bussey hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.