I'm doing this as part of StinkyLulu's blogathon, but I'm a teeny bit late!
Anna Kendrick in Up in the Air is just about the best thing to happen to supporting actresses this decade (so sorry, Mo'Nique!). What exactly is a supporting actress? Somebody whose presence moves the film from good to great? Somebody who makes a character with limited screentime? Somebody who executes every scene so perfectly it's almost as if the word supporting was made to honor them and them only? Check, check, and check! Anna Kendrick has it all.
Take the firing scene (via the webcam, that is). Tell an actor to do that scene for an audition, you'll get some bore of a performance. When you have Anna Kendrick completely understand Natalie Keener to the point of practically being her, you get movie magic. It's not movie magic in the sense that Avatar is a revelation in technical achievements, or Gone with the Wind is to the epics, but it is movie magic in its simplest sense: Being transported to another world where humans live, not impressions and knock-offs. Natalie, as so well done by Anna, is a real human captured on celluloid. She has ticks, she has a mind, and it's as if a script weren't even there for Anna to read. It's all of these reasons, and many more, that I salutre Miss Kendrick! Congrats. girl, you've earned it.