Thornton has always been a versatile actor able to sell comedy, drama and perhaps most skillfully… uncomfortable creepiness. He flexed all three muscles this year in FX’s excellent series Fargo during its inaugural season, making us want to laugh, cry and frankly run out of the room to escape his too-cool-for-school psychosis as Lorne Malvo, a hitman of sorts who seems to revel not only in killing people—but also messing with their minds. We’re not sure anyone else could have pulled it off in quite the same way. Most impressive was the subtlety of a performance steeped in malevolence but also a sense that Thornton’s Malvo could go straight if it weren’t for the constant cadre of idiots around him. Whatever the reason, Thornton’s performance is one for the ages.

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