Saturday, March 04, 2006

Gods of Hollywood

It occured to me the other day that Josh Lucas is like the cosmos' response to the wasted celebrity of Matthew McConaughey. Like when the movie Powder failed to make any money, so the Gods of Hollywood got John Travolta and tried again with Phenomenon. A duplicate that seems less like crass marketing, and more like some karmic second attempt. Remember when McConaughay seemed like he could be the next big thing? He started off with some fun roles in low profile movies, and then seemed poised to break big with A Time to Kill, but then squandered it with cheesy, sub Meg Ryan dramedies and brainless action flicks. The best thing he's done since A Time to Kill was an absolutely gonzo performance in the otherwise useless Reign of Fire(watch it again, I think he actually BELIEVED he was fighting dragons). And so the cosmos got Josh Lucas, who has everything that McConaughey has except for the oily creepiness. He's been garnering some attention, appearing in a string of movies scientifically formulated to be as inoffensive as green peppers. Even if you don't like it, it's not about to leave a lasting negative impression.
The same thing happened about ten years ago when it seemed Johnny Depp would languish in the world of high quality/low profile films. Remember Skeet Ulrich? Any time Johnny Depp had a headache, Skeet Ulrich took an aspirin. But then, Johnny Depp started to rise in popularity, and now Skeet Ulrich is chained up in Jack Valenti's attic, eating a steady diet of fish heads and moldy bread.

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