Photo: Focus Features
Laura Linney ("Hyde Park on Hudson") -- As Margaret Suckley, a fifth cousin turned secret lover to President Franklin D. Roosevelt (Bill Murray), Linney plays a faded daisy. She shows every wrinkle in a face that would have been plainly pretty but has passed its marital sell-by date. Linney knows what she's doing, and she doesn't give this poor relation any more power than Suckley would have had when she entered FDR's inner sanctum. She is outmaneuvered at every point, and yet her love, her sense of a spinster's rebirth at an unexpected opportunity that takes her out of the musty cedar closet of her life and puts her in the center of the president's household -- all are real. Linney's performance is as precise and painstaking as needlepoint as she artfully stitches the private life of a virtually unknown woman in the shadow of a great man.