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Cannes 2013: 10 Incredible Performances That Ruled The Festival

10. Robert Redford - All Is Lost

Robert Redford Robert Redford knows all about the rigours of acting - at more than 70 years of age now, he's seen a fair few testing roles - but few performances could have taken as much out of the actor as his heavyweight but subtle turn in solo movie All Is Lost. Playing an unnamed sailor, clearly unsuited to sailing alone (so laboured are his actions and so painful the wrestling with the sea,) Redford is a picture of a leading man, even stripped of the rather helpful tool of speech. He spends almost 100% of the film, in which his character is lost at sea and suffers an almost comical series of unfortunate events, without uttering a word (aside from a couple of well-placed and well-deserved expletives and a short prologue voice-over) and remarkably his performance doesn't suffer. The character lacks a backstory, and so familiar is Redford, and so sympathetic his character, that it's hard not to see the character as Redford himself, battle-worn from his long career, making a final stand against the inevitable slow march to death. That adds a touch of pathos to the character, even if it isn't conscious, and the final evaluation that he is worth watching alone and silent for so long is the most fitting tribute there could be. Read the full All Is Lost review here.
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