I don’t “know” anything but here’s how I see it, or am feeling it. Melissa McCarthy‘s Can You Ever Forgive Me? performance is still at the top because of the surprise factor. I wasn’t expecting to be as strongly affected as I was, and I believed every word, every line, every conveyance. Glenn Close‘s silent partner in The Wife is a close second for reasons I’ve recently explained — it’s a great zeitgeist-capturing performance that is also very specific and beautifully measured and released, especially in terms of her character’s anger. Cold War‘s Joanna Kulig is ranked third because she’s simply given one of the slyest and most memorable force-of-personality performances of the year, hands down — the most fascinating, combustible, full-hearted and femme fatale-ish. Viola Davis‘s survivor in Widows is not diminished by being in fourth-place, but as gripping as her tough woman in a tense, high-pressure situation, I can’t see ranking her above McCarthy, Close and Kulig. Lastly I’ve got Lady Gaga, who for my money has delivered the goods in A Star Is Born — I believed her character’s situation, felt her currents, etc.