Friday, March 21, 2008

This summer... Robert Downey Jr. is black and Benicio Del Toro is the Wolfman

Tropic Thunder
Yes, that's Robert Downey Jr.

With Tropic Thunder, it looks like Ben Stiller's doing a big budget spoof about a Vietnam War film that gets all Galaxy Quest in the middle. He plays his usual action hero spoof character, Jack Black plays Jack Black, and most interestingly Robert Downey Jr. plays an actor who gets too far into his roles... when he found out the character was originally written as black, he undergoes "a controversial medical procedure."
He's the funniest part of the trailer, which I thought was pretty lackluster. I used to love Ben Stiller's show and I liked The Cable Guy, which he directed, but lately he seems to be treading a lot of familiar ground. Heat Vision and Jack was pretty damn funny, and from the trailer this seems like it has potential.
Tom Cruise has a cameo as Carl from Aqua Teen Hunger Force.

The Wolf Man
"Even a man who is pure at heart, and says his prayers by night, may become a wolf when the wolfbane blooms and the autumn moon is bright."
-Dead Gypsy Bitch
The Wolf Man is my favorite of the old Universal monster movies. It's got a great story and a tragic protagonist. The original Dracula, the first two Frankensteins, and the Mummy are deserving classics but this story has a more human touch, because he gets cursed through no fault of his own.

Benicio Del Toro is starring in the remake, in Rick Baker make-up. I'm a big fan of the original film, and I'm not sure how well it's going to hold up. I mean, Jack Nicholson already did Wolf, which I thought was a pretty interesting update. EW has an article about the make-up with better pictures.
A more classic Wolf Man pose.

Del Toro is one of my favorite actors, and I think this is a good role for him. I mean, he played Wolf Boy in Big Top Pee-Wee! Lon Chaney Jr. had a much more innocent look to him. I like Benicio but he has a guilty look about him. Anthony Hopkins is cast as the older Talbot who started the curse, so that should be fun too. Not a stretch for Hannibal Lecter to play, but really, who else could they choose for the part?

He's fucking scary enough without make-up.

I'm not even kidding. The make-up looks great, but does he even need it? Look at that test shot. The worst part of Wolf was seeing Nicholson and James Spader have their silly wolf fight in make-up. I don't expect a big-name, Universal franchise-reboot blockbuster to go arty and see how interesting the story would be as a psychological horror story, but maybe someone will try it after this one becomes part of the movie culture.

And here's hoping they use "Werewolves of London" in the movie somewhere.


Rob L. said...

The "Dead Gypsy Bitch"'s name is Maria Ouspenskaya.

How insensitive! My family cat was named after her, when I was a kid.

Tommy Salami said...

Your cat was named Ouspenskaya? Ouspie for short?

I love that movie and she's one of the best parts, her and a rare Bela Lugosi sans make-up (for some parts).

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