Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Les is more with Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise is dancing on the head of a pin...and it's a freaky, awkward dance he probably thinks is cool. See, people want badly to make declarative statements about things, which is why the world screamed "HIS CAREER IS DEAD" after Cruise's freaky couch jumping (which, by the way, was faaaaaar less creepy than his interview with Matt Lauer) and why everyone wants to declare "TOM CRUISE IS BACK!" now that he's made a few movies and appearances. Consider the following:
  • He never really fell off - Mission Impossible III did $134 million domestic and had a worldwide total of nearly $400 million. True, he did have a bomb with Lions for Lambs (only $17 million), but that was Cruise's "art movie" (remember Magnolia and Eyes Wide Shut weren't blockbusters either, and that's when he was TOM CRUISE). He's only done a cameo and one film since then.
  • He never really came back - Then again, look at it like this: The only truly big movie he's done since the career hokey pokey he played was Valkyrie, which failed to hit $100 million, even if it was by no means a flop. Yes, his role in Tropic Thunder was well received, but it wasn't instant redemption, as Valkyrie came out afterwards and wasn't gangbusters.
What this means is, there's an awful lot riding on Knight and Day and a lot riding on Cruise's next move, which Devin from Chud.com has seemingly predicted beautifully. Remember that fat-suit cameo from Tropic? Well, it's back.

Cruise confirmed that he and his lackeys, er, associates are praying to Xenu for a way to turn the Les Grossman, foul-mouthed producer/Harvey Weinstein parody, into a full movie. And although I appreciate the self-deprecation angle that Cruise is shooting for, this is a bad idea. Grossman nearly overstayed his welcome during an extended appearance on the MTV Movie Awards. His depth seems to extend to doing a kooky dance and swearing. That's funny at first, when it's shocking, but not when it keeps going. Personally, I like Slashfilm.com's suggestion that Paramount just use Grossman as a fake producer in comedies that somehow involve the entertainment world. It would be far funnier to see Grossman pop up unexpectedly somewhere then to be forcefed his schtick for 120 minutes. We'll see if this ever actually happens. If Mission Impossible IV is as good as I think it can be (yes, I'm serious), he may be TOM CRUISE again (provided Knight and Day goes well), then it's a B-line straight for a role he can get an Academy Award for, something he covets and something he'll be given as a cherry on the top of a redemption sundae when he's famous again. This has been an important message from a guy taking Tom Cruise seriously for a few minutes.

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