Julianne Moore has had a busy year, and the fruits of her labor arrived when the Academy nominated her for both Best Leading Actress (Far From Heaven) and Best Supporting Actress (The Hours). But we've known her for years as a great actress and an indie fave who doesn't mind taking the occasional risk and showing some skin. Here are some roles where Moore not only displays her talents in front of the camera--she also displays her "goodies."
• Boogie Nights (Topless)--It stands to reason that if you're playing a porn starlet, you're going to have to show some skin. And while Heather Graham's full-frontal may lead the chubby charge in P.T. Anderson's song to family and the golden age of porn, Moore isn't far behind. Her steamy scene with Mark Wahlberg's Dirk Diggler in his on-camera debut shows the waify, freckled, and fair Julianne in a naughty new light.
• Shortcuts (Bottomless)--Robert Altman's sprawling salute to six-degrees-of-separation in L.A. features magnificent acting, nonsequiturs, and tons of people talking over each other. Here, Moore plays a nude-lovin' portrait artist who's prodded into admitting a drunken affair to her hubby. Throughout her impassioned monologue of admittance, she's naked from the waist down, letting God and everybody know that yes, the "collar and cuffs do indeed match" on this stunning redhead.
• The Big Lebowski (Full-frontal)--Perhaps Moore's most stylized character. In this wonderful Coen brothers feature, she once again plays an artist, but this time she's a politically charged, jet-setting sort, who's unafraid of succumbing to affectation. Flying in to her studio on a contraption that allows her to glide above her canvasses, splattering paint a la Jackson Pollock, Moore is interrupted by The Dude, with whom she has some business to discuss. A quick, flirtatious camera grabs the whole of her form before she can get a robe over herself. Isn't this why they invented the freeze-frame? JONATHAN MAHALAK