That's why it's so often the villain that everyone raves about being amazing. Like Bardem in Skyfall for example.
Both Craig and Dame Judi received praise for their performances too. And neither were loud or eccentric.
You know, thinking back on it, it was a amazing that in a film populated by Gene Hackman and Marlon Brando, this inexperienced upstart in Chris Reeve was able to give a genre defining performance. It's really a miracle.