Monday, January 11, 2010

Review: John Malkovich

They keep talking about Malkovich playing the Vulture in the next Spiderman movie. So I figured it was time for a reminder of who Malkovich is.

Yes I loved him once. I was mesmerized by his performance alongside little boy Christian Bale in Empire of the Sun. He was outstanding in Dangerous Liaisons. Not to mention his propensity for playing villains. In the Line of Fire and Con Air are both excellent examples of what he was once capable of. But at some point the tides began to turn.

I loved Rounders. I thought it was great movie when it came out. Matt Damon was good, Edward Norton better, but Malkovich? He played this horrible character with an abominably bad accent. It was a complete miscue. Nevertheless he came back strong in Being John Malkovich. Which after watching, I was quick to forgive him a bad role.

But that's not where it ends. Shadow of the Vampire was a horrible movie by all accounts. Knockaround Guys, should have been better than it was. Though in his defense there was little redeeming from anyone in that film. When he starred in the Sequel to The Incredible Mr. Ripley, he was pulling the coffin lid down. With his turn as the evil French man trying to take the crown in Johnny English, he effectively nailed the lid shut.

As of late, when I've seen him in something I can't help but feel that he's just playing a characterization of his old self. Self parody is really only funny if everyone's in on the joke. Sure he has continued to do some worthy movies mixed with the crap. A couple he's even been good in. But these days it doesn't feel like he's even phoning in his performances so much as having a lookalike do it for him.

Course for all I know Being John Malkovich was a true story and he was hijacked. All I know is that while Malkovich can still be good if he's in a good role, if cast in a cheesy role, he becomes completely unbearable. And while I love Sam Raimi and think he's done wonders with Spiderman, I can't help but feel that a character like The Vulture would only bring out the bad Malkovich. If that happened it would be like taking Spidey back in time and dropping him off in Batman and Robin, and letting him languish in their hellish bad joke of a world.

And no one wants that.


  1. I love Johnny M. I'll see any movie with him in it. Now, I might be disappointed... but I'll still go see any movie with him in it.

  2. I used to feel that unquestionable love, but I've just been burned too many times.

  3. Can I share a secret? In 11th grade I had such a crush on John! It was Dangerous Liaisons that made me fall for him. I also loved Empire of The Sun with a tasty young Christian Bale. Sorry I'm such a girl.

    Tales Of A Fourth Grade Nothing

  4. Lol, a crush on Malkovich? I can understand Christian Bale, but Malkovich?


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