How do you define good acting?

In a post earlier today,
Reid Rosefelt asked a good question about the nature of acting and the varied definitions that that different parties use to size up performances for awards purposes. Coincidentally this past weekend, after having watched two movies over successive days, “Love and Other Drugs” and “Tiny Furniture,” I ended up having an argument on the same subject.

A few of the people who watched “Tiny Furniture” with me were put off by the performances, and I found myself getting angry. I thought the characters were incredibly believable and naturalistic. In spite of the fact that I knew in advance that Lena Dunham had written and directed the movie in addition to starring in it, and that two members of her family basically play themselves in the film, I found myself forgetting those facts as I watched the film.

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