My list of guys who cannot act- but I love watching them anyway!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Isn't he pretty? Do I care if he can act? No, I don't.

A couple of weekends ago it came to my attention that there are quite a few 'actors' that I enjoy watching despite the fact that they really have very little acting ability at all. For some of us, I think we just enjoy the living art of watching something pretty and shiny, regardless of whether or not there's any real substance to it.

Thus began the list that I am offering today. If you have some suggestions I've forgotten, please feel free to add them! And I'd love to see if anyone can come up with a collective list of women who also can't act but managed to make careers of it. Right now the only one that immediately comes to mind is Diane Lane. Every time I see her I think- who is the world is she sleeping with to continue to get offered parts- and then I's Josh Brolin.

1. Richard Gere – I’ve been watching Richard Gere since I was a young woman who enjoyed seeing him do pull ups, shirtless, in American Gigolo. Since then he’s played the surly, emotionally vacant main character in Officer and A Gentleman, Pretty Woman, First Knight, and many other forgetful movies. Still, we think we want to see him…we are intrigued somehow by his emotional distance, mesmerized by his cold, dead eyes. Does he represent to us the unattainable guy we liked back in our 20’s who turned out to be a soul-less bastard? I don’t know…but we do like to watch him.I will give him some props for one movie in which I think he actually had an acting moment: Chicago.

2. Russell Crowe – Maybe it’s the Aussie accent we can’t resist. Maybe it’s that deep down we know Russell represents every guy who was probably too good looking for us in High School and treated every woman he was with like crap. Whatever it is, we like watching him. No, I haven’t forgotten that Russell won best Actor for Gladiator and has been nominated two other times. But if you watch closely, you’ll find that in every movie Russell is in, Russell is playing Russell. That’s not really acting. He’s saying other words, but the inflection, the delivery; the look is all classic Russell. And while we love watching Russell be Russell, it doesn’t make him a good actor.

3. Hugh Grant – I know, it hurt to put him on here. Notting Hill is honestly one of my very favorite guilty pleasure movies. I loved him in that movie, I wished I could have dated and then married him in that movie. He was delightful, he was charming, he was Hugh. And that is the thing we really can’t forget. Like Russell and several of our other actors here: Hugh is always Hugh. Witty, charming, boyish, lopsided grin….Hugh. We love him. We want to take him off to a cozy little cottage in every century we can think of, and we don’t really care whether or not he can act. But he’s still playing Hugh.

4. Ryan Reynolds – Ah, the man who started this blog in the first place. El Kaiser Guapo was the one who pointed out that there isn’t a serious film critic or movie lover in the world who thinks Ryan Reynolds can act. And my initial reaction was “what? I loved him in the Proposal!” Okay, I did. And I loved him in Definitely, Maybe, where Abigail Breslin acted circles around him at the age of 12. Did you know he’s acted in almost 40 films? Can you name 5 of them? Point made. Sorry, Ryan, you are no Brando. But…he’s adorable; he looks fabulous without a shirt on. Point made.

5. Ben Affleck – I doubt I’ll get any arguments here, Ben can’t act. He’s adorable. He’s the best friend of the guy you really wanted to date anyway (Matt Damon) and he plays Matt’s best friend really well, in real life and on film. But that isn’t acting. And he’s done some real stinkers! Still, I loved him as Matt’s friend in Good Will Hunting. I liked him as Matt’s (who wasn’t even in the movie but you sensed him off screen) best friend who was dating Liv and having ‘cookie sex’ with her in Armageddon. I liked him playing himself in Kevin’s movies. I actually like Ben being Ben, which is what he does best.

6. Matt Bomer – If you don’t know who he is, well you’re missing out on some pretty awesome eye candy! This man is just yummy to watch. He is surrounded by actors on the show White Collar…and I really enjoy watching the show. He has moments where he’s trying, I think of his part here as charming and gorgeous guy who’s in acting class. Despite the fact it’s an “FBI” show, I know there is a story board somewhere in which “Shirt Off” is written and in every episode the writers have to work that in. And why not, the man looks wonderful with his shirt off.

I thought Keanu should have been on the list. I thought he might give Richard Gere a run for 1st place here. He probably should, in fact, be up there. Who else can you think of that can make millions per film playing exactly the same, dead pan role? If Keanu IS playing himself, he’s pretty boring in real life. Honestly, the man has no charisma at all, which at least Richard Gere has on screen. Which is why, though he might be the worst, most successful actor in Hollywood: he did not make my list. Because while he intrigues us enough to watch him…like a train wreck…he isn’t eye candy. There is something else going on with Keanu but he isn’t popular because he’s pretty. I honestly don’t know what it is….

Orlando Bloom was going to be on the list until El Kaiser Guapo pointed out he hasn’t been relevant for 6 years now.

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