Friday, March 18, 2011

Tween Phenoms Evaluated

With Twilight coming to a close soon and The Hunger Games starting production in the fall, I think its time to take a look at how far we've come since the phenomenon hit the big screen in 2008. This was inspired by Vanity Fair's new cover story about Robert Pattinson, who'll be appearing next month alongside Reese Witherspoon and Christoph Waltz in Water for Elephants. Before we begin, I would like to say regarding the latter film that I do think Jennifer Lawrence is too old to be playing teenage Katniss in The Hunger Games, but if Jake Gyllenhaal can be Persian, then why not? I don't know much about this series, but I look forward to finding out in the coming months.

Robert Pattinson

He's become synonomous with his role as Edward Cullen in the Twilight films, and as the Vanity Fair article suggests, he's none too excited about that. He's been trying to branch out, though, but his first attempt, Remember Me, was a critical and commercial flop. Water for Elephants, on the other hand, will have a built-in audience in fans of Sara Guren's novel, and he'll be surrounded by terrific actors and the director of Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" video, Francis Lawrence (he also directed Constantine and I Am Legend, but those pale in comparison). Personally, I've only seen Pattinson in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and New Moon, and I wasn't particularly impressed by either. That being said, he is at least trying to avoid being typecast, so that kind of self-awareness is promising. Pattinson may be the kind of actor who just needs the right roles to showcase his chops; maybe he'll surprise us in Water for Elephants or David Cronenberg's Cosmopolis?

Kristen Stewart

Stewart is the cream of the crop of the Twilight main trio. In the role of Bella, she's wasting her talents, though anybody would in that role (Bella is supposed to be bland so that, in the books, readers can see themselves as Bella and live the fantasy of having two hot men fight over her, which is, in my opinion at least, how the books became so popular. Therefore in the film version of the books the actress playing Bella would have to act boring and flavorless so as not to distract from the gawking at hot men.). However, if you want proof that Stewart can act, look no further than her fiery performance as Joan Jett in The Runaways. Or at her more subdued turn in Into the Wild. Hell, just watch Adventureland to see that she really can be an interesting love interest. Stewart seems to be doing the same as Pattinson, trying out different roles in an attempt to avoid the dreaded pigeonhole. She's stuck with independent filmmakers mostly, so they're not huge moneymakers, but she's getting the street cred she'll need to work after Twilight.

Taylor Lautner

Lautner, unfortunately, gets the distinction of being the least interesting of the group. His previous credentials include Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3D, as well as an SNL appearance that was stiff, boring, and generally uninspiring. However, he's also the one that Hollywood is most gaga over. He's proven he's not much of an actor, but he seems to be the Ashton Kutcher type: despite his lack of talent, he's attractive enough to women to have a strong career. He's been offered several action movies (read: movies that allow him to be shirtless), including Peter Berg's board-game-adaptation Battleship alongside Rihanna (what does that tell you?). Interestingly enough, though he may be the worst actor of the bunch, he'll likely be the most successful. Welcome to Hollywood.

What are your thoughts on these three's futures?


Jack Ibbetson said...

I think their futures may be slightly hindered and restricted by their backgrounds

Jose said...

Oh my, I think all of them are terrible.
Stay away from the movie where Pattinson "plays" Dali. It's just plain blech.
Stewart can be interesting to a certain degree. She is just so dull though. She never looks interested in anything.
I actually thought she was too passive in "The Runaways", she let all the hard work to Dakota, and we all know how much that child loves the spotlight.