Kate Winslet made our 2004 Entertainers of the Year list
''I remember being suspended by the wires and liking it a lot,'' says Kate Winslet, reminiscing about playing Wendy in a school production of Peter Pan when she was 15. ''I'm sure I was not very good.''
Somehow we doubt it. After all, in her most recent brush with J.M. Barrie's children's classic, Finding Neverland, Winslet soars. As a widowed mother of four, Winslet's Sylvia Llewelyn Davies meets a married playwright (Johnny Depp) willing to both accept and help carry her baggage. Her character is a radiant mix of grief and innocence a grown-up saint who's a devilish kid at heart.
For most actors, that performance would be enough to rest on this year. But Neverland was the follow-up to Winslet's other terrific turn. In the Möbius-strip romance, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, the biggest stunt in a movie consisting of daredevil storytelling stunts was casting Winslet not costar Jim Carrey as the film's live wire. Desperate to be loved, Winslet's Clementine is frazzled her emotions as schizophrenic as her ever-changing hair color. And Winslet goes for broke in a way she never has before. At the end, when Clementine takes a chance on a relationship that may end in disaster for a second time, it feels like the most hopeful definition of love there is.