Friday, March 02, 2007

I only like Adrien Brody when he's a Polish piano player during the Second World War.

That is, I only like him in The Pianist.

I have no idea why Brody is so outstandingly brilliant in that Roman Polanski stunner (my best of 2002) and so ingratiatingly irritating in every other thing I've ever seen him in. I say this because I saw Allan Coulter's drab and sluggish Hollywoodland yesterday, and every moment that Brody's character, sardonic, small-time private investigator (is there another kind?) was on screen, I just wanted to punch him. Repeatedly. Not only only does poor George Reeves (here played rather boringly by the praised Ben Affleck) get sidelined even in his own life story, but he gets pushed aside by Brody's smug, holier-than-thou mug. It doesn't help that Brody's character is so smug and holier-than-thou in attitude either, although the script clearly wants you to sympathise with him as he spins into a Black Dahlia-lite obsession with the suicide/murder (???!!!) of the depressed Superman actor. It doesn't help either that the flashbacks to Reeves' life are infinitely more interesting (though still rather dull) and every time it switches back to Brody you can virtually hear the audience sighing as one. And it doesn't help that Brody is costumed so that it continually looks like he's suddenly appeared from the year 2000. If Quantum Leap was still on, I'd swear Brody was being inhabited by Sam Beckett.

Diane Lane is good though. So yeah. There's that.

I also watched the little-known stageplay adaptation The 24th Day, about a man (Scott Speedman) who takes hostage the man (James Marsden) who may have given him HIV five years ago when he strayed once from his marriage. The film is by no means perfect, and some of the dialogue is terribly risible, but the dissection of truth and trust is kind fascinating to watch play out, and the two actors are more than capable of holding the interest.

Especially James Marsden. Now I don't know where my recent obsession with Mr. Marsden has come from, but he's such a painfully underrated actor than maybe I'm compensating for the rest of the world's ignorance. I impulsively ordered Heights from the US (since it has not been, and shows no sign of being, released here) mostly because he's in it. He brought so much more pathos to the jilted-lover roles in X-Men and Superman Returns than most actors would have even bothered doing... but please, someone get him away from Bryan Singer! Singer obviously hates the man, because he's always being dumped for a superhero in his films. (Although Cyclops is so much cooler than Wolverine... am I alone there? Okay...) He looks like he might also be getting dumped by Amy Adams in Enchanted this year... although that's just conjecture on my part- but then his rival is McDreamy himself, Patrick Dempsey, so he's clearly doomed. Give this man some meaty roles, stat- he's more than capable.

1 comment:

RC said...

I'm with you on Brody at this point in his career.

please talented.