Saturday, October 22, 2005

Jake Gyllenhaal on Film

Jake Gyllenhaal is going to become part of the A+-list (i.e. the top of the A-list) very soon. I don’t think he’s there yet, but he’s close. His leading role in Donnie Darko turned him from a nobody into a somebody and I’ve heard good things about The Good Girl, which I never saw. Over the past couple of years his role in the big-budget The Day After Tomorrow combined with his romance with Kirsten Dunst has turned him into one of the hottest young actors around.

However, this year Jake is in three movies, Proof, Brokeback Mountain and Jarhead. Proof, about the daughter of a brilliant mathematician who falls in love with one of her mentally disturbed father’s ex-students, got mediocre reviews from critics, but has got positive reviews from audiences who have seen the movie. I’ll likely see it on video sometime, as it does have some interesting elements to it.

On a side note, Jake is also currently filming Zodiac, a movie based on the still-unsolved Zodiac murders of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s in San Francisco. His random murders terrorised the city before abruptly coming to a halt and the identity of the killer has never been determined. The Zodiac Killer murdered 8 people, but he claimed to have killed as many as 17 (off-hand I think that was his highest claim) and some believed he could have killed as many as 50. As a true-crime buff I’m quite excited to see a story about the Zodiac, always one of my favourite cases (I referenced it when spoiling my ballot in a grade 6 class election – yes, I am a peculiar individual), on the big screen. And, the bonus that it will include Jake Glyenhaal (along with Mark Ruffalo, Gary Oldman and Chloe Sevigny – all good people) erases any doubt I had about seeing the movie.

Returning to the original post, I’m particularly excited to see Jake’s other two movies. I quite enjoy Sam Mendes as a director and feel confident he can adapt an ex-soldier’s memoirs about his time in Kuwait during the Gulf War into a compelling movie. Can Gyllenhaal accurately portray the complexity of wartime and its effects on an individual? We can only wait to find out, but I’m predicting positive, but not earth-shattering, reviews for the film. The gem of the three could be Brokeback Mountain, which I’m quite excited for. I don’t know if two hot young actors in the prime of their careers have ever played a pair of a lovers in a mainstream movie before and though it’s not nearly as much of a taboo as it would have been 20 years ago, I must commend Jake and Heath Ledger on accepting the role. Based on the Annie Proulx short story I think that this movie can capture the loneliness of closeted homosexuality forty years ago, particularly in Midwestern America. It’s about not only the taboo of gay sex, but also about the pain of hiding one’s true sexual feelings and romantic attachments behind a veil of secrecy. It will be interesting to see if Gyllenhaal, Ledger and director Ang Lee can make this movie feel authentic, but if they can I think it may well ring true as one of the most honest love stories on film of the past year.

And, if you’re already a Gyllenhaal fan and think I was late to the party, think again. If anything, I am the leader of this train. I was speaking highly of him like two or three years ago. Ask Sophie, if you doubt me.

4 Comments:

At October 24, 2005 at 9:17 a.m., Blogger SH said...

It was only last year that you ejaculated on about him.

 
At October 24, 2005 at 9:57 a.m., Blogger Thomas said...

If by last year you mean 18 months ago or so.....

 
At October 24, 2005 at 10:23 p.m., Blogger Thomas said...

I said 18 months....

 
At October 25, 2005 at 5:01 a.m., Blogger SH said...

Fine then, a year and a half ago.

 

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