The New York Times Magazine has created a terrifying "video gallery of dreams and transformations" of thirteen different actresses "whose performances defined the year in film." Here you will see talents like Naomi Watts and Marion Cotillard doing all of the things we love to see our bravest, most creative actresses do: lying down, blinking, opening their mouths and leaving them open for minutes at a time, looking, smiling quietly to themselves, clenching their fists, weeping silently at the sky, and twirling - always twirling. That said, it also shows us what Rebel Wilson would look like as a mermaid, which is tremendous and a gift and well worth seeing.
Each segment is a more unsettling version of the worst high-altitude fever dream you've ever had than the last. Here's a look at each short film in order, with marks given based on incomprehensibility:
What nightmare world is this? After the end. Wallis has been left perfectly and gloriously alone to brutalize her dolls, cover the grass in spray paint, and eat a grotesquely swollen apple before trying to survive another night alone in her flimsy tent.
How terrifying is it? Fairly. The pulsing, insistent beat of the music coupled with Wallis' jerky backwards crawling out of the tent is not dissimilar to the crab-walking scene from The Exorcist.
What nightmare world is this? A beautiful, frail white woman is a maid. She is very unhappy; even smelling the curtains cannot cheer her. She swipes a gloved hand at her alabaster brow because vacuuming is hard and she is very delicate. Swaths of flimsy fabric dance about her in an attempt to cheer her up; this does not alleviate her class rage and she invites the wind to bring destruction with her laughter.
How terrifying is it? Very. Hathaway turns her crazy Liza Minelli eyes up to maximum intensity. She looks like a deer that has committed murder.
What nightmare world is this? Rebel Wilson tries to rest by a lake and enjoy the afternoon sun in her lounging jumpsuit, but a pack of vicious, feral children bombard her with water balloons and shatter her peace. She becomes a beautiful mermaid as an act of revenge.
How terrifying is it? Extremely; every one of these monstrous children is allowed to live.
What nightmare world is this? Naomi Watts cannot apply her makeup properly; she puts on a vaudeville-style mustache and covers her face in lipstick.
How terrifying is it? It's very Maria Bamford ("When I go home to visit, I make sure to wear dark green eye shadow and a thick line of lipstick around my mouth...Baby look pretty now, mama?") meets Pedro Almodóvar. But Naomi is Jet Girl; she can handle it. Only moderately terrifying.
What nightmare world is this? Kerry Washington re-enacts the Michael Keaton film Multiplicity while wearing one of Oprah's favorite things. The music sounds like, but cannot possibly be, the theme from Up.
How terrifying is it? Not at all. Multiplicity was a very fun movie, if you went into it with reasonable expectations.
What nightmare world is this? Elle Fanning looks at a flower and twirls in the rain. It's one of the shortest entries in the series, which seems appropriate, given that she only made one film in 2012 and does not really belong here at all.
How terrifying is it? N/A.
What nightmare world is this? Keira Knightley, dressed like Rachel from Blade Runner, has been punished for some unnameable sin and is forced to sit in a chair in the woods, staring at a parasol, for the rest of eternity.
How terrifying is it? Moderately. The scratchy sound played whenever she turns her neck is unsettling. Depends on whether or not you believe the ending implies she too is a replicant.
What nightmare world is this? In a world where women must water their gardens in harem pants and dreadlocked hair, one brave young girl has the strength to fall down and look at a snake. She then visits an imaginary rave.
How terrifying is it? Tremendously. Her wig is very reminiscent of the creature that appears during the end of the diner scene in Mulholland Drive. I still close my eyes during that scene, and it's been years since that film came out.
What nightmare world is this? A Boniva commercial. A serene older white woman stretches in her backyard, then practices shotput with stray asteroids she has found.
How terrifying is it? Somewhat. She appears to have retreated into a bizarre dream world by the end of the sequence, where it is implied that she believes she can communicate with the asteroids, which she has brought into bed with her.
What nightmare world is this? Marion Cotillard wanders onto the set of a perfume commercial, lies down on the ground and occasionally blinks.
How terrifying is it? Fairly; it is possible that she is having a stroke and there is no one to help her.
What nightmare world is this?A dog sits on the lap of a woman in a billowy caftan. Together they plan the piano. Another dog, sitting on the couch - perhaps a Jungian double of the first dog - dreams of freedom.
How terrifying is it? Significantly. Shirley MacLaine kisses the dog on the mouth.
What nightmare world is this? Amy Adams wanders through a darkened building and pulls some shapes in front of a bright light, capping them off with a classic Spielberg surprise face.
How terrifying is it? Less scary than the Spielberg face in Jurassic Park, more scary than the Spielberg face in Catch Me If You Can.
What nightmare world is this? A woman wearing the same costume as Quvenzhané Wallis disrobes into a nightgown and dances playfully throughout her apartment. Bubbles surround her. She leaps, but they do not stop coming. The camera pulls away as her apartment becomes inundated with them - the viewer leaves her to her certain fate.
How terrifying is it? Very. Remember the bubbles from The Prisoner? Bubbles cannot be trusted.