Over the years, the understated and sometimes overlooked Andrew Garfield – who also has those sort after never ageing genes – has given us some enthralling and unforgettable performances on the cinematic screen which has seen him win and been nominated for numerous awards.
Garfield’s 2017 is set to add an array of awards to his overflowing trophy cabinet, with the announcement only last week of his nomination for a Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama for Mel Gibson’s Hacksaw Ridge – having already won two awards for best actor for the same film with the Critics Choice and AACTA awards – Prior to the UK release of Hacksaw Ridge comes the highly anticipated new offering from Academy Award winning Director Martin Scorsese, which see’s Garfield placed in the lead role in a story about faith and religion, Silence, which releases into cinemas on New Year’s Day.
Growing up in Epsom, Surrey, Garfield – who has dual citizenship with the UK and the US – had his career turning point at a young age with the 2007 Channel 4 drama Boy A which saw him win the 2008 British Academy Television Award for Best Actor. He went on from there to his feature film debut in 2007 in Lions for Lambs which lead to minor and supporting roles in The Other Boleyn Girl and The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus alongside the late great Heath Ledger. With the upcoming release of Silence, we take a look at some of Garfield’s most notable performances.
Silence, which has been adapted by Scorsese from the 1966 award winning novel by Shusaki Endo, delves into the depths of the 17th century to tell the story of two Portuguese Missionaries and their mission to Japan to find their beloved mentor and minister Father Christavao Ferreira, played by Liam Neeson, who is rumoured to have denounced his faith. Garfield plays Father Sebastian Rodriquez alongside an exceedingly gaunt Adam Driver as Father Francisco Garupe. As the pair hit the shores of Japan it becomes all too apparent that the ruling Samurai and their feudal lords are trying to eradicate Christianity amongst the people, forcing Christian Villagers into worshipping in secret, If found to be Christian, the people were tortured into renouncing their beliefs or they would face a long and drawn out agonizing death. The villagers, who have been craving Christian leadership, cling to the two missionaries putting their own lives at risk. At just under 3 hours long, Silence is a beautiful yet brutal depiction of 17th century Japan yet has moments of paralysis on the brain. However, Garfield gives an exceptionally brilliant and sensitive performance, a career-defining portrayal of a heavily religious man who stands firm on his beliefs in the face of so much suffering on his behalf, a man who, inevitably, questions God’s silence when so many are suffering in his name. Although strangely, Silence hasn’t received any Golden Globe nominations, we are praying at least Garfield gets a nod for Best Actor for Silence in the forthcoming awards season elsewhere.
Whilst winning the Grand Prix at the 2015 Deauville American Film Festival it was nowhere near blockbuster status and slipped under many people’s radar with its limited release but is most certainly one of those rare little gems that should be seen. Garfield stars opposite Michael Shannon and Laura Dern. Garfield’s passionate and affecting performance as a single father who has lost his job and faces eviction from the family home takes drastic moralistic measures to dig himself out of a financial hole. Impressing the man sent in to repossess his home Rick Carver with his gumption, Carver gives him a job repairing the homes of the evicted and quickly makes his way up to his assistant, and forging documents that see people he knows thrown out of their home until a court case and a threat of a man being killed wakes up his moral conscious.
The Amazing Spiderman 1 and 2.
The lure of the red and blue superhero suit was obviously too strong to ignore for Garfield as he was cast in the 2012 Marc Webb version of Spider-man as Peter Parker, alongside Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy 10 years after Tobey Maguire’s Spider-man started the insurgence of Marvel’s takeover of the cinematic universe. This highest grossing reboot of Sam Raimi’s Spider-man had some pretty positive reviews with critics gushing over Garfield’s new take on Peter Parker making it authentic. Garfield even admitted to shedding a few tears when he first put on the suit of a character he himself had loved since a child.
Never Let Me Go
In 2010, Garfield finally made his big breakthrough, firstly with Never Let Me Go alongside Carey Mulligan and Keira Knightley, with its original storyline being the major attraction for Garfield’s interest in playing his role. A Romantic tale told in a dystopian alternate universe, Never Let Me Go see’s the three characters embroiled in a love triangle as they come to terms with the fact they are only alive as organ donors, their lives won’t amount to anything as they are destined to die at a young age. The film opened the 54th London Film Festival but didn’t fair to well at the US Box office regardless of the positive reviews from critics praising cast performances.
The Social Network
If you’re not aware of The Social Network you must be living under a stone, this is the film that put Garfield well and truly on the map. The story of the founders of Facebook saw Jesse Eisenberg play Mark Zuckerberg, Garfield as Eduardo Saverin and Justin Timberlake as Sean Parker. It also saw the film clean up at the awards back in 2011 with 4 Golden Globe wins including Best Motion Picture, 3 British Film Academy awards and 3 Oscars, Sadly none for the exceptional cast performances.
Silence hits UK cinemas January 1st 2017.