Daniel Day-Lewis as Daniel Plainview in There Will Be Blood. DDL received nineteen of fifty five votes to take this contest with Heath Ledger's performance as the Joker close behind with seventeen votes. Winslet received only two votes for playing Clementine in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Hoffman got one pity vote for his portrayal of Truman Capote (it's up for debate between Ben and I whether this or Before the Devil Knows You're Dead is the best of his career).
It's no surprise that Day-Lewis won and is on the top of many lists for playing Plainview with such a menace, yet remain one of the most captivating performances since Welles in Citizen Kane, or Al Pacino in The Godfather. Plainview unfolds like a nightmare that at once is pleasing, but is never more than a few seconds away from becoming terrifying. The manner in which he drug himself, after breaking his leg mining silver, is an amazing examination of the drive that Plainview exhibits in becoming the wealthiest man in this century. The drive to be best all men.