Criticism of ‘The unbearable weight of an enormous talent’ Laughing with Cage, not at Cage: caricature as redemption


Perhaps the only chance of redemption that cage he had was to caricature himself. Not an easy undertaking because over time it has become a caricature increasingly distant from that actor propelled by his cousin. Coppola in the distant The street law, Cotton Club Y Peggy Sue got married back in the ’80s, immediately becoming a comedy star that decade and the next under Jewison (Moon spell) or Bergmann (honeymoon for three Y it could happend to you), of more or less auteur cinema under the orders of the Coens (arizona baby), Montaldo (Time to kill), Lynch (Wild Heart), Figgis (Leaving Las Vegas), Palm (Snake Eyes) or Scorsese (To the limit) and above all -as far as popularity is concerned- of the new 90s action cinema directed by Green (fire birds), Bay (The rock), western (with Air) or Woo (Face to face). Perhaps too much success and too many films – his career in these two decades is impressive – for limited acting skills.

The fact is that in the last 20 years Cage has become a caricature of himself despite his attempts to keep the three lines at the same time, achieving good performances in very few moments (perhaps only in joe by Gordon Green and in Pig of Sarnoski). In view of which, not without intelligence, he has decided to make a joke of his hero character and his presumed interpretative limitations, playing with the distances that may exist between the star (of action films) and the actor (of serious films) and between the characters he has played in the first ones and reality.

The clever script Kevin Etten and Tom Gormican features Nicolas Cage as Nick Cage, a broke actor who is forced to accept a highly paid proposal from a millionaire fan (Pedro Pascal) whose fortune has a dirty origin. But the fiction that he usually interprets becomes reality when the INCthe kidnapping of the daughter of… (I won’t say whose) and a villain played by… Paco León!, and the unfortunate actor is forced to live up to his characters.

Making a joke of not only himself and his action movie characters, but also one of his most important (that complex game between fiction and reality that was the orchid thief by Jonze and Kaufman), and relying on the script by Etten and Gormican directed by the second, Cage manages to interest, amuse and settle accounts with his caricature at a decisive moment in his career, recently his great work in Pig and waiting for the ambitious western The Old Way Y Butcher’s Crossing (based on the acclaimed and influential novel by John Williams). It seems that he wanted the public to laugh with him, instead of laughing at him, before completing a turn in his career.

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