Article by James
2011 seems to be the year for the talented and charismatic Michael Fassbender. With four movies released this year, let’s hope he becomes the household name he truly deserves. This year you will know him firstly as Magneto in the blockbuster prequel, X-Men: First Class. Some have said he was the reason to see it despite the shambles that it was. And of course there was Jan Eyre. Next up is a film called Shame about a man dealing with sex addiction, and then we have the new David Cronenberg film, A Dangerous Method.
For those unfamiliar (obviously living under a rock) with the legendary director, google immediately! David Cronenberg is a director who has delivered some of the most powerful and unique examples of cinema over the past few decades. Scanners, The Fly and Naked Lunch to name a few, it is his last two films that have personally impressed me most. 2005’s A History of Violence and 2007’s Eastern Promises are two of the most compelling films ever made, presenting great performances and riveting viewing. With his new venture, the star of his last two films, Viggo Mortensen, returns as Sigmund Freud and Fassbender plays Carl Jung. The film chronicles how the relationship between their characters gave birth to psychoanalysis. Also starring the deservedly recognized Keira Knightly, A Dangerous Method hits screens in November.
Even though I did want to rave about Mr Fassbender (I believe I have a wee bit) – his role in 2008’s Hunger is one of those cinematic experiences I will never forget – I would just like to say I think Viggo Mortensen is one brave man. I will get to that in a mo. With a career behind him also spanning decades, VM first came to notice with me in 1997’s crapfest Demi Moore debacle, G.I. Jane. We all need to eat I guess. Next it was in 2000’s surprisingly entertaining Sandra Bullock vehicle, 28 Days. But it was Peter Jackson’s visionary The Lord of the Rings trilogy that launched Mr Mortensen into popular consciousness as Aragon, and gave him the ability to guide his own path. Which led him to the brave point I mentioned above. The “fight scene in the bath-house” in Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises will always be a scene that makes me salute Mr Mortensen. He does it completely nude. Check it out. It’s horrific, quite shocking, and admirable for an actor of his profile to agree to. Personally, I believe Cronenberg is something of a masochist and his actors bare the brunt.
Cronenberg has always pushed his actors and his audiences. And, we are all the better for it.