Nicolas Cage is having a renaissance of sorts and we couldn’t be happier about it. Could he be on track to be the next king of the horror genre?
Nicolas Cage has always been a delight to watch in every movie that he has been in. I enjoy his work and I’m not afraid to admit it. For years he has been derided for his choices of roles and his over-the-top performances.
He has even been turned into a meme. Which depending upon how you look at it could be good or bad.
The criticism started after he played Charlie Bodell in Francis Coppola’s Peggy Sue Got Married. Coppola just happened to be his uncle which drew cries of nepotism.
Critics at the time didn’t understand his choice for voicing the character like (using Cage’s description), “Pokey from The Gumby Show.” Things were so bad that Ray Stark who was the producer for Tri-Star flew to the film’s location for the express purpose of firing the actor.
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His costar, Kathleen Turner in her 2008 autobiography did not have kind things to say about his performance and made allegations against Cage personally. He filed a defamation lawsuit against the actress which he ended up winning.
I remember seeing Peggy Sue Got Married in the theater and I wasn’t distracted by his performance. In fact, it made me revisit Valley Girl. The 1983 modernization of Romeo and Juliet had Cage playing a punk rocker from the wrong side of the tracks falling in love with a preppy suburban girl from the valley.
He was charming and vulnerable. Even though it was your typical teen romance for that time, you could see that there was something special about him. Cage had a presence. When he showed up on screen, you paid attention.
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Following his career throughout the years, I became increasingly impressed with the choices that he made as an actor. He works with directors that he enjoys and finds parts that stimulate him and allow him to have creative reign.
Cage is also adept at traversing genres. This is an actor who is fearless and one that is comfortable in a big budget action picture like Con Air and also has the ability to be at home in a story driven film like Adaptation playing opposite Meryl Streep.
Let’s not forget that he won an Academy Award for Leaving Las Vegas. His performance as Ben Sanderson, a screenwriter who goes to Sin City to drink himself to death was heartbreaking and gut wrenching.
Perhaps what I admire the most is that in his mid-50’s, he is reinventing himself as a major player in the horror genre. Yes, he was in Vampire’s Kiss, Grindhouse (Werewolf Women of the SS) and The Wicker Man. I am talking about hardcore horror, you know, Sam Raimi levels of gore like Mandy.
Plus, there was Mom and Dad, Between Worlds and his most recent effort with Richard Stanley, the Lovecraftian, Color Out of Space which is receiving favorable reviews. The best part is he seems to be having fun and embracing the genre. Perhaps, he is a horror icon in the making. Only time will tell…
Stay tuned for the next chilling effort from Nicolas Cage, Prisoners of the Ghostland which is set to be released sometime this year.
Are you a Nicolas Cage fan? What’s your favorite movie? Do you think he is the next horror icon? Let us know in the comments.