Let’s face the facts. While Kristen Stewart received bags of money and a ton of attention for playing the lead role of Bella Swan in five questionable Twilight films, she managed to get pigeonholed as a real stinky actress in the process. The Twilight franchise, in all of its cheesy glory, dominated pop culture for several years and took its toll on K-Stew by cheapening both her profile and her abilities in the eyes of many. But despite what all of her haters say, K-Stew can actually act. And we mean really act.
Throughout her 16-year career thus far, Stewart has displayed some serious acting chops amidst all that sparkly, vampire clutter. Her most recent work is showcased in the new indie drama Clouds of Sils Maria that hits Canadian theatres this week. The film was praised at TIFF last fall, and K-Stew’s role as Valentine was widely celebrated by critics. She even won a Cesar Award (the French equivalent of an Oscar) for best actress thanks to her performance. Yep, she was that freakin’ good.
In honour of her impressive new role on the big screen this week, here’s a look back at nine other movies that K-Stew was actually pretty great in.
9 movies that Kristen Stewart is actually kind of great in
Panic RoomKristen Stewart was only 12-years old when she starred alongside Jodie Foster in 2002's Panic Room. At that young of an age, K-Stew was terrific. She most definitely held her own alongside Foster, as a trapped, terrified daughter and mother, being home-invaded by a sinister Jared Leto and Forrest Whitaker.Columbia Pictures
SpeakK-Stew was the stand-out actress in 2005's indie drama Speak. In the heavy novel-turned-film, Stewart delivered an emotional performance as a high school freshman named Melinda Sordino, who is forced to deal with the trauma of being raped. Although the film doesn't hold a candle to the book, Stewart's performance was a standout and the best part of the movie.Showtime Networks
Into The WildSure, Into The Wild revolved around Emile Hirsch's fantastic portrayal of Christopher McCandless, but K-Stew's supporting role as the young, naive Tracy Tatro was pretty compelling too. Stewart was convincing as a poor teen girl, trapped in a boring desert commune with dreams of bigger things. Surprise. K-Stew can be convincingly emo when she wants to.Paramount Vantage
On The RoadThe big screen adaptation of Jack Kerouac's beloved hipster-novel On The Road wasn't very good at all. But while the film was kind of a so-so stinker, K-Stew did a great job of bringing the free-spirited character of Marylou to life. She took a big risk with the role and got back some much needed credibility as an actress that Twilight had stole from her.Paramount Vantage
The RunawaysSay what you want about The Runaways, but Kristen Stewart playing Joan Jett totally worked. K-Stew is naturally young and angsty, plus she even kind of looks like Jett. Stewart showed some great acting chops in this movie and delivered a very credible performance as the aggressive female rock star. You can't knock her for her contribution.Apparition Films
Still AliceK-Stew's supporting role as Lydia Howland in 2014's heart-wrenching Still Alice was solid. Stewart nailed her part as a young starving actress who has to cope with her mother's battle with Alzheimer's, along with her family. K-Stew really hammers home the feelings of emotional struggle, loss and confusion. She never did that as Bella!Sony Pictures
The Cake EatersThere's a good chance you've never heard of K-Stew's 2007 small indie film The Cake Eaters, and that's a shame. She's way better off being known for her role as Georgia Kaminski than Bella Swan. Stewart plays a young teen with a rare, incurable disease that comes across as real and endearing. You'll see. Rent this movie and forget about Twilight. 7-57 Releasing
ZathuraDid you know that K-Stew played a great part in a sci-fi family adventure? Back in 2005, Stewart played big sister Lisa Budwing in Zathura. Although she's frozen for a good chunk of the movie (yes, like her acting in Twilight), K-Stew is part of a well-rounded and adorable cast that made this movie a lot of fun. Sadly it was somehow a box office flop.Columbia Pictures
AdventurelandK-Stew's best work has to be her role as troubled teen Em Lewin in Adventureland with Jesse Eisenberg. While Eisenberg plays his usual nerdy, nervous guy, Stewart plays an angsty rich teen, who hates her family and is caught up and outed in an affair with an older man. Perhaps it felt so real because that seems to be K-Stew's real life persona. Either way, she was great in it!Miramax Films