Monday, February 05, 2007

Tom Cruise Is A Great Actor, Part II

Creepy Church/Cult Embraces Even Creepier Celebrity
and the j-man wept
By switters

Man. Just when you didn't think chez Cruise could get any nuttier, turns out Tom's the 1st coming for the L. Ron Hubbard crowd. I presume Isaac Hayes will be taking care of the role of The Artist Formerly Known As John The Beheaded Locust Eater.

Tom brings most of this stuff on himself. It's like he's got this innate ability to say the exact wrong thing at the exact right time. Remember the Brooke Shields dust up on, that's right, Access Hollywood, re: pills, pills, pills, and because of said pills she was a terrible, irresponsible mother and a head case to boot? That post-partum depression thingie was all in her head, I suppose. Makes good sense.

Anyways, my horribly troubled boy can act.

Collateral. Flawless performance. He even outclasses Foxx. Subtle, mannered where appropriate, athletic, graceful, creepy (Hi, Tom!), and, most importantly, deliberate. (More on "deliberate" later.)

War of the Worlds. Takes an otherwise throwaway role in an s/fx-driven movie and gives depth o'plenty to a questionable plot in between all of Dakota Fanning's eardrum-splittable screeching. That's quite the accomplishment.

Minority Report. Great movie that Steve tries to ruin on no fewer than 3 specific occasions. Anderton in the hands (head?) of anyone else would have been a co-star to the drug addicted narcissism of The Silly. (E.g., Will Smith in I, Robot.) In other words, where Smith laughs goofily in the face of supposed danger, Tom sneers. Sorry, folks: It works.

(In case you don't know it yet, y'all are watching a film legend in the making. OT: Is this eerily reminiscent of my posts building up to the Mork & Mindy movie? That's what I thought.)

Eyes Wide Shut. Yeah, this won't make me many allies. Great movie. But you have to watch it at least 5 times (and at least 1 of those 5 times baked out of your mind) to realize it. Great, great, great. Pay particular attention to Dr. Harford's scene with the hooker who tells him her roommate got tested positive for HIV. Apology accepted.

Magnolia. Nope, this one gets its own post entirely.

Vanilla Sky. 3 words: Fearlessness as acting. (!!! That's actually 3 words! Sorry, guys, I'm a bit off this week. I'll get better.)

Syriana. Here's one of the many things that make Tom great: If he'd been in Syriana, he would've totally and completely ruined the movie, but in a really good way, no matter how small the role. There are very few people you can say that about! (Jack Nicholson, The Departed)

Interview With The Vampire. Ahh, yes. Tom's "gay phase". Hey, we all go through it. Let me just tell you this: I'll believe a man can fly when everyone else realizes that Brad Pitt is really only good in supporting roles.

Born on the Fourth of July. Utterly captured that "wheelie" Ron Kovic's anger, rage, denial, and depression. And that was just in the rehabilitation scenes. Pretty much scoops Gary Senise's Lieutenant Dan, if you ask me. Sucka! [cough]

The Color of Money. Tommy single-handedly delivered Paul Newman's Oscar on a silver platter. And the coif! That 'do will be featured in the Museum of Hair and Makeup Breakthroughs in Film right in between Tony Manero's and William Wallace's (whose own hair was based loosely on Robert Plant's in The Song Remains the Same, interestingly enough).

Cocktail. Look at him go! Make mine a double, Bry Man!

Rain Man, Taps, The Firm, A Few Good Men, Jerry (Fuckin') Maguire, Far and Away? The question becomes: Who hasn't Tomboy worked with? Read 'em & weep, pinheads.

Come on, he's a great actor. Everybody's thinking it. I'm the only one with enough guts to say it out loud. Looks like "6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon" has been replaced by "3 Degrees of Tom Cruise".
Coming soon: Tom Cruise Is A Great Actor, Part III

Collateral Damages Gay Myth Again


JohnMcG said...

Looking at the list -- I think it's interesteing how many actors got Oscars for movies with Cruise -- Nicholson, Hoffman, Newman, Cuba Gooding, Jr. for crying out loud. (Looking at the record, it seems Nicholson didn't win for A Few Good Men. Guess it just seemd that way after 1,392 weekend daytime viewings.

As I said, Cruise may have a limited wheelhouse, but that wheelhouse is aligned perfectly with the type of characters we like to see in the movies.

Southern Gal said...

Tom Cruise imo sucks and lucky for you since you're apparently still going through your "gay phase." heh heh [cough]

and I wept...

switters said...

Hi, John! Apology accepted! (Just go with it; it's a bit.)

Hi, southern gal! I believe I owe you an apology. So, without further ado, I'm sorry you're an insane retard. You're welcome!

Dawn Coyote said...

Hi switWell, I find my thinking so close to yours on most thngs that I'm now reconsidering my prior evaluation of the Israel/Palestine issue. Except, maybe, for this: the Iraq war isn't about bringing democracy to Iraq; it's about protecting the interests of a sovereign state from a mindset whose culture seems to be based on an obsession with death.

Did you mean "mindset whose culture", or the other way around? Am I irony deficient (actually, I often am, but not usually where you're concerned)?

switters said...

Hi, Butter Biscuit!

Nice catch. Yeah, that's what I meant. I purposely juxtaposed then transposed the 2 terms. For about the last 6 months I've been posting to a very small audience on purpose. It was a dare/challenge betwixt me and daveto with regard to TQM (Can't find the thread, of course!), and involves the acuteness and power of talking out of both sides of one's mouth. Considering that link up there above, clearly alexa is on to me. (Dude, keep it on the downlow, brah!)

Anyways, at the risk of giving away the punch line/ending, my first salvo, out in the open at least, was obviously this post.

I wonder if any of you have any idea how much my feelings are hurt when people wish that relatives close to me die violent deaths, and want me to be a cripple getting kicked.

Still, so far it's been mildly successful (if somewhat infrequently) on many levels. Consider Iso's careful reading of the Facelift post and her astute observation here.

Then there's one of the more underappreciated yet brilliant minds on the boards.

I.e. (at the risk of repeating myself), I, like Spinal Tap, am not losing popularity; it's just that my audience has become more… selective. Or something to that effect. I'm nothing if not self-important.

Dawn Coyote said...

Fascinating. And I'm busted. In my defense, I'll say that my mild anti-Israel bias arises from being given bad service in a Jerusalem restaurant by a haughty Israeli waiter (and a couple of other, slightly less dumb things).

I'm sorry about your hurt feelings. I expect it's the scalps strung around the seat of your wheelchair that incenses people toward you. We should have a disabilities awareness day, or something.

Southern Gal said...

Hi, Switter's, no need to apologize. It would appear I'm in very good company.

Feel better, K?


bite said...

Maybe I am feeling uncharacteristically empathetic tonight, but I can see everyone's point.

For Ghassan: It is hard to take things in good humor when those that you love are suffering/and in physical danger. That kind of stress makes it difficult to see nuance, I would imagine. Who could blame him? Those who register their "disappointment" can kiss my big flat pasty white ass. I hope they never have to feel the helplessness that Ghassan has had to swallow as he watches the life his family has built in their country crumble.

As for Geoff: He is in a tough position. I can feel his hurt when those he considers his friends make his already difficult job more difficult. Who could blame him?

As for Schad: He is in a tough position. I can feel his hurt when one who he considers a friend behaves in a spiteful way. Who could blame him?

go figure.

As for switters: I can feel his bemused hurt when those who read him do not seem to get his brilliant satire. Who could blame him?

PS I am pledging Hillary $100 a month until the election. Join me if you want to help make history. I plan to take my kids to her innaugaration. I think she will win. Too bad she is going to have to spend as much time discussing her wardrobe choices and hairstyles as she will her foreign policies because the media and this nation are so fucking stupid.

But not as fucking stupid as word verification

JohnMcG said...

Here's another alternative to captcha.

august said...

My beef with Ghassan isn't whether he, personally, has a right to feel offended. It's that banishing humor hurts his cause, which is similar to (but not the same as) my cause.

Also, I hate arguments that take the form, if you are x, then you can say y. Online, it seems particularly stupid.

bite said...

Yes, I can see your point, though there are times when humor may not be the right way to go.

He may be feeling especially sensitive and vulnerable.

Perhaps this would not be a good time for a humorous posts on cancer--you know? And I think he may be universally condemned if he did. (I know I would)

So I am wondering why ghassan is not cut the same slack. Perhaps because the subject for humor has been so dehumanized, even by those of us on the same side. I know I find myself guilty of it.

Fuck, here is where I wish I could write my thoughts better.

Hopefully, what I am trying to say is coming across August, as badly as I am butchering it.

Dawn Coyote said...

I was impressed with him doing his own stunts in MI 1 or 2. I'm less impressed with the public displays of affliction.

How about Punch Drunk Love, another of Paul Thomas Anderson's odd films? Adam Sandler was brilliant with his duct-taped harmonium and fits of rage. What do you think happened to the lovely couple after the credits rolled? Did they get their "happily ever after"?

Schadenfreude said...


I can tell you categorically that Tom Cruise did not do his own stunts in MI or any other movie. The production could not have obtained insurance. No insurance, no completion bond. No completion bond, no financing. No financing, no movie. Period.

Any actor who says he did his own stunts is lying (or redefining stunt to the point of meaninglessness).

(Exception: Jackie Chan in his old Hong Kong movies).

Dawn Coyote said...

Schad: I really wondered about that, but the dvd extra features showed him hanging off the rock in Death Valley or whereever the hell that was. You mean they lied?

re: Jackie Chan - the former Mr. Coyote worked on Rumble in the Bronx. The star broke his leg doing a stunt, and was back filming, like, the next day. Gonzo filmmaking.