No particular order here except Rowlands, Streep and Moore stand as the top three. Tougher to compile than the male list as American actresses have fewer late career opportunities and most of even the very best seem to cap off at only about seven or eight strong film roles at the most. Comments and alternate lists are welcomed!
Gena Rowlands Meryl Streep Julianne Moore Sissy Spacek Jennifer Jason Leigh Ellen Burstyn Tuesday Weld Michelle Williams Lili Taylor Joanne Woodward
Honorable mentions: Jessica Lange, Elisabeth Moss, Viola Davis, Susan Sarandon, Geraldine Chaplin, Barbara Hershey, Alfre Woodard, Jessica Chastain.