Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Can you get past the actor to the movie?

Last weekend I had a friend in to visit and after a late evening of catching up over multiple bottles of wine we popped in the DVD of Eat, Pray, Love. My guest had not seen the movie yet and even though I had seen the film in the theater I was happy to watch it again for the eye candy that is Javier Bardem.

As the movie started and I watched Julia Roberts in the starring role I started to think about Julia Roberts as a happy hooker in Pretty Woman and Julia Roberts as that busty lawyer and Julia Roberts in that horrible movie where she plays a maid with a terrible British accent (Mary Reilly or some other nonsense). Anyway, I realized I was watching Julia Roberts instead of getting lost in the movie. As my mind wandered I started making a mental list of all the other actors who never really become the character they are playing. No matter what the role, they are still the celebrity known as:
  • Jennifer Aniston. Love her. I think I would be friends with her, we would girl gab about our failed marriages over margaritas and guacamole while watching the surfers in Malibu and waiting for our personal yoga trainer to arrive. As an actress though...ya she is always the celebrity Jennifer Aniston. Same hair, same fabulous wardrobe, same girl next door role. Her movies don't get me in the theaters, but she does make good mindless movies for rainy Sundays.
  • Angelina Jolie. The anti Jennifer Aniston. I used to love her. Who didn't. I guess eventually the tabloids ruined her for me and I think every other movie watcher on the planet. I just can't separate the supposed husband stealer-mother to orphans-world peace-french kissing your brother wacko that she may or may not be from the actress on the screen. It doesn't help that EVERY movie she does is so depressing that I would rather be anywhere else than watching it. How many assassins can she play? Ridiculous.
  • Drew Barrymore. She's cute. In everything. Enough said.
  • Hugh Grant. He's cute in everything. Enough said.
  • Brad Pitt. So bored with him. Just don't care what he does, it's always "That former hottie now baby daddy to crazy Angelina Jolie in yet another pseudo wanna be indie film".
  • Keira Knightly. Love her. I want to drink Guinness with her in a London pub. Love her movies too. But I'm a little bored of the spunky English lass characters and the latest films I've seen her in, I just think about having a beer with her in the pub.
And those actors that become the character to where I can forget their real celebrity personality.
  • Meryl Streep. Obviously. Although her as Julia Child was pushing it.
  • Kate Winslet. Hands down my favorite actress working today. She WAS Marianne in Sense and Sensibility.
  • James McAvoy. From his doomed soldier in Atonement to playing a half man, half faun in The Chronicles of Narnia to a killer in Wanted to the wheel chair bound MS character in Inside I'm Dancing. So very, very talented.
  • Renee Zellweger. She WAS Bridget Jones. And Beatrice Potter.
  • Colin Firth. One of the finest male actors ever. From playing Mr. Darcy to King George VI, he is amazing.
  • Matt Damon, Javier Bardem, Ken Watanabe. What is there to say. Talented.
  • Daniel Day-Lewis. Every role he is perfection. My Left Foot is one of the most amazing performances ever.
  • Johnny Depp. He is borderline for me, cartoonish characters versus serious acting.
  • Liam Neeson. Sigh. Who knew he would become my new favorite ass kicker after Taken?
  • And the up-and comings, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Carey Mulligan. Sure they haven't been in many movies, but no matter what other small roles I've seen them in or how many internet pictures of Watson in college or modeling Burberry I've glimpsed or read about Radcliffe acting naked on Broadway, they ARE Harry Potter and Hermione Granger. Mulligan was extraordinary in An Education and shined in her small role in Pride and Prejudice. She's a chameleon.
Who am I missing? Have any favorites?

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