Which 'Twilight' alum is having the best year? Though Robert Pattinson dished out schizophrenic violence in “Rover” and a slimier charm in “Maps to the Stars” (now arriving before the end of 2014), Kirsten Stewart may come out on top, with a twofer knockout of “Camp X-Ray” and “Still Alice” arriving this awards season. Often slammed for her introverted, fragile performances, Stewart dives into both diametric roles – a loner Guantanamo Bay guard and a loving-but-terrified daughter – and between them, audiences should finally get a sense of her range. Somewhere, Taylor Lautner waits for the green light on “Abduction 2.”
“Camp X-Ray” saw mixed reviews out of the 2014 Sundance Film Festival (our own Drew McWeeny found the focus and pace of writer-director Peter Sattler's feature frustrating), but Stewart earned praise across the board. A new trailer presents that character-driven take on the hot-button issue of “terrorist” imprisonment and the kind of stress our soldiers face carrying out Guantanamo orders.
On top of the upcoming “Camp X-Ray” release, The Hollywood Reporter learned over the weekend that Sony Pictures Classics will push an Oscar campaign for Stewart's supporting work in “Still Alice.” As a mother warding off early on-set Alzheimer's, Julianne Moore is the tidal force of “Still Alice” (and she'll get the awards push too) But the performance wouldn't work without Stewart, impossibly real and responsive, to see the disease from the outside.
“Camp X-Ray” and “Still Alice” aren't all for the Stewart: IFC picked up her the Cannes favorite “Clouds of Sils Maria” for release in 2015. We may be having this conversation again down the road.
“Camp X-Ray” arrives opens on VOD and in theaters on October 17th. “Still Alice” will have a limited release in 2014 before opening wider on Jan. 16, 2015.