Spot-on portrayals showcase thespic talent at its best
This has been a good season for actors, with some unusually interesting and outstanding performances on view on the big and small screens. For instance, the film, “The Other Woman,” showcased a number of unexpectedly strong performances from actors who are not all that well-known to viewers.
Expectedly, lead player Cameron Diaz came up with a vibrant and winning portrayal, but the relatively lesser known Leslie Mann surprised us by managing, not just to keep up with her, but also to score her own thespic points.
Mann played the wife of Cameron’s lover in her own unique way—at first, she was predictably whiny and weepy— but, soon enough, she revealed that she could also be madcap and “crazy,” and gave as much as she took!
This “crazy” twist to her character gave her “permission” to sometimes go loopy and unpredictable, taking her scenes with Cameron to absurd heights—without losing the wife’s core of wounded vulnerability.
As actors can vouch, this delicate combination of opposite impulses is difficult to achieve, so Leslie Mann is the year’s comedic surprise, as far as we’re concerned.
Also unexpectedly outstanding in his own way was Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, who played the plum role of the philanderer whose favorite indoor sport was victimizing a long string of gullible women.
This is the sort of role that could otherwise have gone to the more popular likes of Pierce Brosnan, but it’s Waldau’s good fortune to have gotten it—and he takes full advantage of the opportunity to strut his versatile stuff. Not only does he look really good, but his comic timing is spot-on, and we don’t miss seeing a more experienced and bigger star in the role, at all!
On the local TV scene, the performance we’d like to cite is Ronaldo Valdez’s portrayal of the powerful and cold-blooded villain in “Ikaw Lamang,” the series topbilling Kim Chiu and Coco Martin. There are villains and villains galore on TV, but Ronaldo tops them all with his chillingly believable and scary portrayal.
Other TV nemeses come on like a melodramatic house on fire, screaming and ululating with venomous intensity, and at full volume. But, Ronaldo doesn’t need to do any of that, because he is evil chillingly personified. His depiction of a powerful politician used to getting his deadly way is so credibly motivated that he doesn’t have to act up a storm to instill fear in viewers’ hearts.
In other drama series, Ronaldo has played very different, and much more sympathetic characters also believably, so his suddenly “evil” shift in “Ikaw Lamang” shows us what a truly versatile actor he is.
Other TV villains should study his judiciously evil characterization very carefully, so that they’ll know the key difference between “acting”—and being.