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Peter Fenzel and Matthew Wrather continue the discussion of acting, using performance as a lens to diffract the perspectives of the practitioner and the appreciator, which is to say the perspectives of the artist and the critic. Lots of culinary metaphors.
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In terms of actors making each other more attractive, I feel like some of the holiday movies posted about before the new year cover this ground. Some of those that I ended up watching have characters or situations that are only as credible as the actors supporting them.
Generalizing the idea, since the show came up, a current example might be the John Walker character in Falcon and the Winter Soldier. I know where the show is going, because I still remember the comics where Walker was introduced, but here, he’s really only a “villain” because the other characters react to him that way. But until Friday when things presumably change, he’s really just a soldier who was ordered to be a superhero. It’s a world where you can torture thousands of people for weeks and the government turns a blind eye (Wanda Maximoff), but killing a criminal (in what’s basically a similar crime of passion) who you were tasked to stop means that you lose your job and pension…basically because the characters around you treat you as a credible threat. (I’m ignoring the problems of having Captain America be an agent of the military, of course, which is its own can of worms.)
As for Bulworth, I happened to have rewatched it a few weeks ago for the first time since seeing it in theaters (given the state of the package, I bought the DVD a long time ago and forgot about it), and it does make the entire (shockingly star-studded) cast look great, in an industry that has historically been terrible at making diverse casts look good. I don’t recall Halle Berry’s career before that, but I can easily see it being a turning point in her career in the way that Extant (for example) was not. I’m kind of surprised people don’t talk about it more.