Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them (Nov 18, 2016)

I have visited lairs, burrows and nests across five continents, observed the curious habits of magical beasts in a hundred countries, witnessed their powers, gained their trust and, on occasion, beaten them off with my travelling kettle.

Highlights of Eddie Redmayne’s Performance in Jupiter Ascending, About Which I Shall Talk Forever Now
  • His voice, which sounds as if he’s been guzzling crude oil direct from the well for the last six millennia. His throat has been corroded by sheer evil, and yet he can summon up a clear, intelligible shout when needed (”I CREATE LIFE”), which is more than I can do. As with approximately 80% of the movie, there is absolutely no reason for this voice to exist, and yet it does. It is nothing less than a gift from Redmayne’s generous soul.
  • The way his eyes grow dark and wet over…I dunno. It’s never really clear. Balem as written has absolutely no inner life, but Balem as acted has a soul of smog and capitalism. The tears are just his eyes irritated by his own internal pollution. 
  • He commits to those costumes. He owns them. Redmayne plays Balem as if he personally killed every animal that went into his endless black-leather wardrobe. He plays Balem as if he’s always on a catwalk for the latest in space-S&M fashion, and he’s the only model. 
  • The way his face is stuck in a constant grimace. He is made of contempt: for his lackeys, for his family, for everything. He hates himself so much that he follows the absurdly byzantine laws of his universe as a form of self-flagellation. (The Aegis is so laughably ineffectual and the Abrasax family so immanently powerful that there is absolutely no reason for Balem to obey the laws if he didn’t want to.) The only thing he likes is pain. The constant aching facial muscles must be part of that.
  • Balem gestures with the precision of a dancer and walks with the stiff disapproval of a Victorian matron. How is it possible for someone to look like they have a broomstick up their butt and yet ooze around the set like an oil slick? Eddie Redmayne is a divine being. Let us now praise him.
  • I honestly don’t think there is any one component of the performance that could be called Good Acting, but put them all together and Balem becomes a top-tier sci-fi villain. Redmayne got the Oscar for the wrong movie.
Eddie Redmayne gets a lot of grief for supposedly overacting in a role that’s written as an immortal version of King Joffrey who never grew up, but it seems to me a note-perfect portrayal of a spoiled, crybaby legacy child who’s never had to do any work for millennia because he became a decadent immortal cannibal. If anybody knows a real one who behaves differently, I shall retract that statement.
—  Luke Y. Thompson killing it with a sterling defence of Eddie Redmayne’s performance