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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Nicolas Cage Is a Serious Actor


I hadn't been told.

Until Tuesday, that is.

The New York Times told me, so, therefore, it must be true. It's almost as definitive as being told something by Wikipedia.

See, there was this article, see, about a recent spate of fluff movies in which so-called "serious actors" appear and/or star.

If you doubt me (is it even possible?), the online byline read, "Nicolas Cage Is Among Serious Actors in Lightweight Films."

And that gave me a moment of pause.

I am of the opinion that people, and organizations, and mass-communications entities get away with things, statements, and/or actions because people do not take that critical moment of pause to analyze. We, as humanoid-type-folks are blessed with that ability to reason, to fact-check, to ascertain veracity and evaluate for truth or falsehood. We have this capability but rarely, I think, do we use it.

We should do that more often. Take a letter to that effect, Ms. Johnston. Thank you. And get me some more of those candied pralines. They're positively scrumptious.

Now, I'm not sure what substance A. O. Scott of the Times was enjoying/injecting when he wrote this unfortunate article about Nicolas Cage and his supposed status as a "serious actor," but I ran the statement "Nicolas Cage is a serious actor" through my wheezy little brain, filled as it is with vaginas and pralines and 1958-1967 VW Beetle trivia and airline disaster knowledge and warped humor base, and I came up with the answer:


Since when?

Since "Moonstruck"?

Oh, no, wait-- it must have been "Con-Air" that solidified Cage's status as an actor with some Olivier-like chops.

Dah! Shit-- stupid blogger. I forgot about "The Rock" where he totally proved he was up to the challenge of sharing not only film but air-space with Sean Connery.

Then again, that saccharine scrap he made with Michelle Pfeiffer about winning the lottery-- whatever the screw that was-- that was pretty serious.


The A.A.R.P. and the private protection industry got pretty serious about "Guarding Tess." Remember that?

Oh, right. Me neither.

(And that's all I could really muster up without the help of IMDB. Which brings me to the following horsecockery:)

Well, really, if you want to go back into the depths of time, it very well could have been his breakout performance as "Heartbreaker" in the television film, "Industrial Symphony Number 1: The Dream of the Brokenhearted."


The Times article did me the favor of pounding out Cage's latest disgraces, which include the "National Treasure" aneurysms, "Ghost Rider," "Knowing," and "The Sorcerer's Apprentice."

If I am correct, the only two films that Nicolas Cage was involved in that weren't complete and utter ovine emesis were "Leaving Las Vegas" and "Adaptation." I didn't like either of them, but that doesn't mean that they weren't good movies.


I'm just not sure that making two decent, or even pretty good movies since your career began in 1981 makes you, or anyone else who has achieved similar heights, a "serious actor." Especially when you are either delivering all of your fucking lines with your eyes half-closed, in a lethargic, hung-over monotone, or you're screaming your goddamn head off.

Last time I checked, that wasn't serious acting. That's acting bipolar, which, apparently every character that Nicolas Cage plays must be. Which is quite an astonishing coincidence, seeing as only 5.7 million adult Americans have the disorder, and there are 307,006,550 people living in the United States, according to the July, 2009 U.S. Census. So, if my reticent calculations (done with my wife's crisp supervision) are correct, that means that, while only 1.8% of the American population suffers from bipolar disorder, 100% of Nicolas Cage's film characters do.

Which is not only serious, it's extraordinary.

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