With Lucy in the Sky out next week, we rate the actors greatest roles from V for Vendetta to Annihilation
20. Knight of Cups (2015)
Terrence Malick films are never entirely without value, but this comes pretty close: a tiresomely self-indulgent and male-gazey homage to LA life, tricked out with Malicks late-phase tics (whispery voiceovers, tremulous closeups, whirling cameras) that only restate the obtuseness of it all. From the poster and publicity material, you would think that Portman plays a key part here, but no: shes one of the gallery of women with whom a writer, Christian Bale, attempts to find meaning in his life. Portman does quite a bit of moody frisking, from art gallery to hotel room to beach, but theres not much to it.
19. V for Vendetta (2005)
This has acquired quite a bit of lustre since its underwhelming reception on release: the adoption of its mask gag by the Occupy protesters was unexpected, as was its prescience in warning about a future fascist takeover (which seemed a remote prospect in the wholesome mid-oos. Presumably, the projects political slant appealed to Portmans liberal-activist side, but she is miscast as a British TV company minion who is rescued by then becomes complicit with the righteous terror-spreader, V.
18. The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)
Portman and Scarlett Johansson: the 00s dream casting somewhat thrown away, it has to be said, on this hey-nonny-nonny adaptation of Philippa Gregorys history novel, which sought to establish Mary Boleyn as the slinkier of the two Tudor-era-entrancing sisters. Portman is queenly enough as the crafty Anne, but her charm doesnt really come across in corset pictures; she never seems to merge effectively with historical backdrops. (For more evidence, see Goyas Ghosts.)