Posts Tagged ‘mega-acting’

Ghost Rider Presents Spirit of Vengeance

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

tn_GRSoVAlmost exactly 5 years ago when they released the first GHOST RIDER picture (directed by the writer of the GRUMPY OLD MEN pictures) I thought it looked so hilarious that I couldn’t help going to the first showing. I remember it was before noon at an AMC theater on a Friday, which I discovered was their window for what counts as a matinee, so it cost 5 bucks. Good deal, but small consolation for the unfortunately boring movie and the guilt of having participated in making it a surprise hit even though nobody liked it.

So on Friday I found myself facing down part 2, this time from Nevildine/Taylor, the giggling-camera-wigglers-on-rollerblades legally and morally responsible for CRANK and GAMER. Against 22 different styles and colors of better judgment I found myself compelled to the first showing of this one too. The matinee costs 6 bucks now. But that’s fair – it’s at least a dollar more enjoyable than part 1. Probly $1.50 even. (read the rest of this shit…)

Leon (aka The Professional)

Tuesday, March 1st, 2011

tn_leonThese days Luc Besson is mostly thought of as a producer of action movies (DISTRICT B13, TAKEN, THE TRANSPORTER, UNLEASHED). But man, there was a time there a while back when his heart was in being a writer/director, and LEON aka THE PROFESSIONAL is a hell of a good action movie he did.

The year was 1994 and American crime movies were having sort of a resurgence. Young men with movie cameras were reading the Psalms of John Woo and rediscovering the joys of onscreen bullet discharge. It was the year of KILLING ZOE, THE LAST SEDUCTION, FRESH, the Alec Baldwin version of THE GETAWAY and of course DEATH WISH V: THE FACE OF DEATH.
(read the rest of this shit…)

“Life can be mega”

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

mega-faceoff

Good ol’ Fred Topel just did an interview with Nicolas Cage for Screen Junkies, and he was cool enough to ask Cage about the concept of mega-acting:

SJ: I’ve been reading Outlawvern.com and he’s coined the phrase “mega acting” with regard to your work in films like Bad Lieutenant and Face/Off. The idea is it’s not overacting, because it’s intentionally extreme. Do you feel that’s accurate?

NC: Yeah, I think that makes sense. I often refer to it as outside the box, as opposed to over the top. The two things mean the same thing on one hand but one sort of celebrates the idea of breaking free and going into other forms of expression, whether they’re abstract or extreme or as this friend of yours calls mega acting. The other sort of implies you’re not being truthful to the part, but see, I don’t know how you measure something like that because life can be extreme and life can be mega. I wouldn’t do that to somebody in another art form. Not to compare myself to someone like Francis Bacon but just as a point of explanation, I wouldn’t say, “Hey, you can’t paint a screaming pope like that because a screaming pope doesn’t look like that naturally.”

When Cage is interviewed most of the time he’s probly sitting in front of blownup movie posters talking bullshit with local news people who still watch Entertainment Tonight every night. What’s cool about Fred’s interview is he comes from appreciating the odd sides of Cage’s work, so that’s what he asks about. Check out the whole thing for some more interesting insights.

thanks to Fred for doing the interview and Tommy S. for sending me the link

Face/Off

Wednesday, September 1st, 2010

tn_faceoffFACE/OFF is a crazy one-time-only deal, a strange collision of people and movements that could only really exist in that specific place and time. Not before, and definitely not since. On that day the wave of late ’80s Hong Kong action cinema crashed and exploded against the rocky shores of Hollywood, spraying sideways and soaking Nic Cage and John Travolta, who happened to be standing there. It’s not the only American John Woo movie I like (we’ll always have HARD TARGET and BLACKJACK), but it’s the only one that seems like The Real John Woo. It takes that old Hong Kong John Woo we loved, with all his emotional sincerity and unhinged sense of stylized action, and combines him organically with big budget Hollywood, achieving a smooth balance where the Hollywood bullshit side doesn’t overpower the other one. (read the rest of this shit…)

Deadfall

Friday, January 15th, 2010

tn_deadfallI honestly never knew about this Nic Cage-featuring neo-noir until some of you recommended it to me in the comments. So thanks for that. Since I’d never heard of it and the cover looks like the type of photoshop they do on an uncopyrighted double feature DVD you’d buy for 99 cents at Safeway I assumed this was an early Cage performance. I was shocked when I realized it was 1993, same year he did the much more polished RED ROCK WEST. It’s kind of hilarious that a crime movie this clunky came out after RESERVOIR DOGS. (read the rest of this shit…)

Vampire’s Kiss

Friday, December 18th, 2009

tn_vampireskissMan, you guys were right about VAMPIRE’S KISS. You really can’t judge a DVD by its cover. I always imagined it was a typical dumb ’80s comedy, but it’s something totally different. The year was 1988, Nic Cage was in his early 20s and hungry – so hungry he ate a live roach on camera. And appparently it wasn’t in the script, it was his idea. Planned in advance though – he didn’t improvise it. That would’ve been even more impressive. But even separate of this roach-eating what this is is a grade-A example of mega-acting. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Bad Lieutenant Port of Call New Orleans

Monday, November 30th, 2009

tn_badlieutenantpocnoWhen I wrote about Abel Ferrara’s BAD LIEUTENANT about 2 years ago I said that should be one of the movies they remake in BE KIND REWIND, or some kids should do a remake in their backyard, or you should use scenes from it for your monologue in acting class. So far I haven’t seen any of those, but it’s even better to see a remake starring Nicolas Cage. Sort of a remake, anyway.

What exactly is THE BAD LIEUTENANT: PORT OF CALL NEW ORLEANS? It’s not a sequel, not exactly a remake to BAD LIEUTENANT. Werner Herzog, who directed this new one, claims he hasn’t seen BAD LIEUTENANT. Ferrara claimed he was gonna stop this one from being made. (In my opinion he failed.) This isn’t about the same character and I didn’t notice any mention of the original screenplay in the credits. But it does have a little bit of a BAD LIEUTENANT vibe, and that’s all I can ask. (read the rest of this shit…)

The Wicker Man (2006)

Friday, May 18th, 2007

When I read that the unrated DVD of THE WICKER MAN REMAKE has a SHOCKING ALTERNATE ENDING!, I was a little confused. Because if you’ve ever seen the original, good version of THE WICKER MAN you know this can only SPOILER end one way: an outdoor barbecue featuring Nic Cage in a central role. What could the SHOCKING ALTERNATE ENDING be? He doesn’t get burned alive?

The movie is a pointless and weird re-jiggering of the original. It’s not really the crazed spectacle I was hoping for, at least not from beginning to end. If you’ve seen the original you know where it’s going, and it’s not all that exciting to see him wander around a weird farm colony island looking for this missing girl and getting frustrated that nobody is cooperating. But oh boy does it have its moments. (read the rest of this shit…)