It hasn’t been until recently that my strong and almost unwarranted hatred for Nicholas Cage has become so apparent. Why does this man, nominated for many awards and winner of an Academy Award, grind my gears? Why does the mere mention of his name set me on edge? Why have I created a graphical representation of his poor acting ability relative to other actors of this day and age? Why have I created a random Nick Cage bad quote generator on excel? I too have asked myself these questions, actually, I’m asking myself these questions as I type this. So for those of you who have righteously taken up the Team Cage cause (and thus showing your apparent poor judgment of theatrical ability. KIDDING, but seriously…) and for those of you who have just now discovered my hatred for the 47-year old by stumbling upon this essay: prepare yourselves. The following essay, or more appropriately titled: rant, will feature not only an explanation of my utter dislike of the man, but will also feature undeniably hysterical pictorial representations and examples from YouTube. Let us begin…
Poor Movie Choices
If you IMDB Nick cage (yes, I’m using ‘IMDB’ as a verb), you will find that he has appeared in 66 movies… 66! Now for all you die-hard Cage fans out there, how many Nick Cage movies can you name?…. That’s what I thought, like 6 at the most. As you look at his repertoire you’ll find a lot of familiar titles like “Con Air”, “Gone in 60 Seconds”, and of course, “National Treasure” (more on this movie later). You’ll also find movies like “Kiss of Death”, “Guarding Tess”, and “Industrial Symphony No. 1: The Dream of the Brokenhearted”. If these movies don’t make you ask yourself, “WTF, mate?”, then you must have received the “I’ve seen every movie you’ve never heard of” badge in Boy Scouts. Nick Cage for some reason feels compelled to be in every movie presented to him, good or bad, small part or leading man. I’m not just picking on him either, College Humor made a video about Cage’s film selection:
‘Too cool for scool’
Nicolas Cage spells his name without the “H”. Now, I know what you’re thinking… he’s Italian! I’m just being picky, judgmental, and prejudice against his national origin. Well, don’t get your knickers in a twist and stop wasting your energy defending a man who was born in California, not Italy. Though he is in fact the nephew of the famous director Francis Ford Coppola, and therefore Italian somewhere down the road, he was actually born ‘Nicholas Cage” with an “H”. He took it out himself. Poser? I think so. People just don’t go around taking letters out of names and words which have been around for hundreds of years. How would you feel if I took the “L” out of my name but still demanded you pronounce it “Ah-Lee” instead of “ah- eye!”? Ridiculous. Pretty soon we’d have “scools” instead of “schools” and “soulders” instead of “shoulders”. It would lead to anarchy I tell you, anarchy!
And yes, I’m being over-dramatic for comedic effect.
Thanksgiving at the Coppola’s
I like to imagine the Coppola family gathered around the family table at Thanksgiving, about to dive into some amazing home-cooked Italian meal after spending the afternoon in the living room conversing with friends and family over a fancy wine and cheese tray. Suddenly, a faint knock is heard upon the door. No…wait.. he wouldn’t do it that way. REWIND. A loud crash is heard coming from the front of the house. Nick Cage has kicked down the door with his black boots. He’s wearing his stereotypical jeans with dark shirt and leather jacket and for some reason has a flash light in his hand (I feel like he’s always holding a flashlight or some other kind of cylindrical object). As his family members stare at him and the splintered pile of wood that was once the front door, Cage opens his mouth and delivers the line, “I’m gonna steal the neighbor’s Thanksgiving turkey”. Long story short, he is probably the awkward, family member whose invitation to family get-togethers is always conveniently ‘lost’.
“And the winner goes too…”
Whenever I start my rant on Nick Cage there is always that one person who points out that he’s actually a nominated and award winning actor. I would like to point out that he has only been nominated once for an Acadmeny award (for his role in Adaptation, 2002) and won Best Actor in a Leading Role for his character in “Leaving Las Vegas” (1996). I researched the nominees that year and found that Sean Penn, Anthony Hopkins, and Richard Dreyfuss, and some Italian dude were also nominated for the category. The only explanation for this unthinkable display of insanity on part of the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is that they must have been either bribed, threatened, black mailed, on drugs, or there was a tear in the space time continuum. I know this because Mel Gibson was stubbed for his performance in “Braveheart”, which one Best Picture that year. “Leaving Las Vegas” wasn’t even nominated for Best Picture that year…
My money is on black mail.
P.S. I’m going to ignore the two Golden Globe noms and 1 win (Leaving las Vegas) because I think the Globes are stupid.
You’ll always remember your first.
The first movie I ever saw featuring Nicholas Cage, that I remember, is “Face/Off”, the gripping action/thriller with John Travolta playing a FBI agent who somehow switches faces with terrorist and all-around bad guy Nick Cage, thus causing drama and explosions to ensue. I actually didn’t even remember Nick Cage was in this movie until recently…and he stars in it! That right there shows you how unmemorable of an actor he is. All I can remember about this movie is Nick’s character being really creepy and throwing a huge fit in the Prison cafeteria… or is it John Travolta’s character with Nick’s face…Hm…? Note to self: re-watch “Face/Off”.
“It’s not delivery, its DiGiorno!”
Nick Cage has this thing where he’ll deliver a line like he doesn’t care about it. I swear while he’s speaking he is thinking in his head, “I could care less about this movie so I’m going to be as low-key as possible and just barely mumble my lines”. He’s either overly muted or unnecessarily overdramatic in movies. Here are some great examples that will make you ask yourself, “How did this guy get an Oscar nom, let alone an actual Oscar?” I told you; Blackmail:
Dramatic (“The Wicker Man”):
“I’m going to steal the Declaration of Independance.”
National Treasure is by far my favorite Nick Cage movie. Even I cannot deny how much I like this movie. However, if I could fast forward through the scenes with Nick Cage in them due to his poor acting ability and, once again, overly muted line delivery, I would. Alas, I would be left with a very short movie. I think, no, am convinced that the success of this movie is due to the creative historical plot and in no way due to Nick Cage’s star power or acting prowess. It’s just a fun movie that makes you forgive the casting director for paying Nick Cage $20,000,000 to be in the film.
FUN FACT: this is Cage’s highest paid role out of the 66 movies he’s been in.
Another movie I really liked was “World Trade Center”. Once again, this isn’t due to Cage’s performance. Any movie made only 5 years after the attack on the World Trade Centers would make me get emotional. This movie had a really interesting story (that apparently was true.. or at least based on truth). I’ve only seen it once when I was 15 so I’d have to see it again to give it a proper review.
His hair is horrible, just horrible. It makes Donald Trump look like a Pantene Pro-V model. Its like his hair is nomadic. It is migration season and his eye brows are currently en route to the land above cage’s mouth, where they’re determined to become a handle-bar mustache. The hair on his head is slowly slipping onto the back of his head. It’s holding on for dear life! Someone save it! It’s like a comb-over who forgot its purpose was to cover the bald spot, not reveal it. I stumbled upon a wise sage of a blogger who devised a clever, and apparently true mathematical equation to explain the relation between the success of a Nick Cage movie and his hair:
Nick Cage + long hair = bad movie
Nick Cage + long hair + facial hair = ‘good’ movie. Prime example: the only movies people mention in defense of my accusations of his horribleness: “Raising Arizona” and “Con Air”.
I’d like to add an equation of my own:
Nick Cage + short hair = bad movie.
This equation explains every other movie he’s ever been in. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.