Berlin. He plays in his own league, and he apparently succeeds in doing this very easily: Ryan Gosling is considered one of the coolest, most interesting and at the same time most discreet actors in Hollywood, not just since the global success of “La La Land”. The Canadian keeps his private life largely to himself. What kind of character is hidden behind the glossy facade of this professional screen, who has been in show business with interruptions since he was eight?
Starting with the “Mickey Mouse Club”
Jana Buchholz asks herself this question in her material-rich, exciting documentary “Ryan Gosling – Hollywood’s demigod”, which will be shown on Friday at 10:05 pm on Arte. It all started with the “Mickey Mouse Club”, a sketch and game show for children in which Gosling appeared as a teenager alongside future stars like Justin Timberlake or Christina Aguilera. He had been bullied at school, his mother taught him at home, but the adolescent finally found approval and recognition at the Mickey Mouse Club.
This was followed by the TV series “Der Junge Herkules”, a cute sandal-film juvenile sin, but at the age of 21 Gosling caused a sensation as a Jewish neo-Nazi in the explosive drama “Inside A Skinhead”. He was referred to as the James Dean of his generation and landed his first major commercial success with the love drama “Like a Single Day”.
Gosling is not playing it safe
It was then typical for the Canadian that he never let himself be tied to one type of role, never played it safe. Instead, he played a drug addicted high school teacher in “Half Nelson”, and alongside Michelle Williams in “Blue Valentine” he created the moving portrait of a complicated marriage.
And then there was the leather jacket with the giant scorpion on the back: In the thriller “Drive”, Gosling embodied a mysterious stuntman, cool woman who understands and protector, to whom all macho attitudes seem alien. This actor succeeds again and again in surrounding his characters with a secret, you never get very clever out of him. The relationship with Hollywood star Eva Mendes also takes place outside of the public eye. Instagram stories? Nothing. At film premieres, he likes to walk the red carpet with his mother and older sister. The 39-year-old is above all a family man, says one of the interviewees in the short documentary. Anything but a “demigod”.
With the musical “La La Land”, Gosling took a big risk and was rewarded for his courage. The film about a jazz pianist and a singer in Hollywood won six Academy Awards. Gosling was nominated for Best Actor, but came away empty-handed. He received a lot of praise for his role as the replica hunter in “Blade Runner 2047”. The future looked really cool there.