13 April 2008

Not Just Moi

There was an article after my own heart in yesterday's Grauniad, in which the writer pondered what it is about Keanu that makes people adore him (other than the fact that he was "great looking. I mean great looking") even though the films in which he stars are consistently mediocre, at best, and he hasn't been in anything outstanding since The Matrix and that "his last film of any consequence was A Scanner Darkly, a cartoon" (which I actually thought was pretty good, Dick fan that I am). Sez Joe Queenan:

A long, long time ago, those of us who love Keanu Reeves decided that no matter how many dismal movies like Johnny Mnemonic he made, and no matter how inept his acting in A Walk In The Clouds, and no matter how inappropriate his casting in Much Ado About Nothing and Bram Stoker's Dracula, we would never stop being thrilled when news of an exciting new Keanu project was announced. There was something about Keanu Reeves that we liked, and nothing could ever change that.

He then goes on to compare Keanu to other actors whom the audience will always love, no matter how dire the films in which they star: Sean Connery, Gene Hackman and Christopher Walken, for example. I can't remember when I became a fan - I know that I was fairly ambivalent about him when The Matrix came out and was strangely into his against-type-cast role of Cate Blanchett's abusive husband in The Gift, and then was massively keen to go to see Something's Gotta Give just because I knew he was in it, stocking up, in the meantime, on his back catalogue in DVD (Dangerous Liaisons, Speed, MOPI, Point Break, Much Ado, even Bill and Ted!). 2006 was a good summer - a double dose of Keanu in A Scanner Darkly and the truly dire Lake House.

Since then, it's all been a bit quiet on the Keanu front, so I'm glad to discover he has a new film out on Friday - Street Kings (James Ellroy adaptation in which it's unclear whether or not he's a good cop or a bad cop); I know, I call myself a fan and then don't find out that I could have been gearing myself up for a new film of his for months now. As it is, I guess I'll have to drop all plans on Friday night to go and see the film. Still, as Quenan wrote:

This week, his new film Street Kings will be released, and those of us who love him will be out there in force to see it. We hope it will be good, but if it is not we will not hold it against him. We never have before; why start now?

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