Australia the movie [...] has one huge problem. It stars Nicole Kidman. Big mistake. Big, big mistake. At a stroke, the world's female cinemagoers will say as one: “I'm not going to see it if she's in it.”
Kidman is one of those women who turns other women off. And no, not just because she's pretty and we're jealous. It is because we perceive, and men don't, that she's one of the most overrated actors in the world, a woman who has been the kiss of death in practically every movie she has starred in.
Kidman is exquisitely accomplished at being awful. Did anyone see Cold Mountain? The sweeping American epic (note: another epic) foundered on the rocks of her gormless mirror-gaze. She can't act. Instead, she drifts around films like a lost porcelain doll, looking frozen, brittle and vapid, staring at the camera with her oh-golly-look-how-I'm-looking-interesting blue eyes.
And today's (predominantly male) directors haven't quite woken up to the fact that it just isn't enough for female actors just to wander around like supermodels: they need another skill too. Like emotion.
- The Times, 20 November 2008