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The Good, the Bad & the Badass: Angelina Jolie

05.26.2014

Last week, we took a look at the career of the iconic, beloved Ian McKellen. This week's subject is just as beloved, both for her iconic work on-screen, and her humanitarian work off-screen. Oh, and let's not forget, she's insanely hot....

Angelina Jolie

The first time I saw Angelina Jolie, my heart just about stopped. It was in 1995, when the movie HACKERS came out. I was thirteen years old, and her insanely appealing, exotic looks blew my mind. While she was a sex symbol right out of the gate, over the years that followed she's turned in to much more. She's proven herself as a serious actress, an action heroine, a light comedienne (although I'd wager comedy is still not her strong suit), and off-screen, a humanitarian and role-model, and one half of the most glamorous couple in Hollywood.

MALEFICENT marks Jolie's return to the big-screen, after a four-year absence. Recently, Jolie underwent a preventative double mastectomy after genetic testing revealed the presence of the BRCA mutation, which left her at an abnormally high risk for breast cancer (a disease which affected her late mother). Despite this, Jolie's plunged right back into work, embarking on a press tour to promote BRCA testing, as well as directing her second film, UNBROKEN, which boasts a screenplay by the Coen Bros, and is already generating tremendous Oscar buzz.

Her Best Performance

To me, Jolie has never been better than she was in GIA. Despite being an HBO movie, this was the thing that really put her on the map, and made people realize that she was more than just another pretty face. Granted, the movie is something of a DVD favourite thanks to her numerous hot nude scenes, but there's a lot more it to that, and Gia Carangi – a real life supermodel who spiraled into drug addiction and died at age twenty-six of AIDS – is one hell of a role for her. Other than GIRL, INTERRUPTED, I don't think Jolie's ever really gotten the chance to be as edgy as she is here on the big screen, which is a shame.

Her Most Overrated Film

Outside of MR & MRS. SMITH and WANTED I've never been a fan of Jolie's action movies. Directors get too caught up making her into a fetish fantasy figure, and both of her TOMB RAIDER films are terrible, even though Jolie is fine in both of them. SALT was a fairly successful film, and for the first half hour, I thought it was a pretty efficient spy thriller. But once she dons the (hot) black wig and turns into this ultra-sexy killer spy it becomes absolutely ridiculous, although audiences didn't seem to mind as it was relatively well-received.

Her Most Underrated Film

I find it sad that her film with Clint Eastwood, CHANGELING, was utterly rejected by critics and audiences alike, as it was a perfectly fine (if a touch slow) drama. She's wonderful as a mother whose son disappears, and almost goes insane when the authorities try to pass an impostor off as her lost child. It's really one of Jolie's best performances, and ripe for rediscovery.

Her Most Memorable Scene

I'm actually not a huge fan of Doug Liman's MR & MRS. SMITH. It's a decent action comedy, but it's undermined by an ending that resolves nothing, and seems to promise a sequel which nobody's ever gotten around to making. That said, Jolie's chemistry with soon-to-be-partner Brad Pitt is white-hot. Their big fight is like WAR OF THE ROSES on steroids, and one of the only really great parts of an otherwise so-so movie.

Her Top-Five Films

5. WANTED
4. CHANGELING
3. A MIGHTY HEART
2. GIRL, INTERRUPTED
1. GIA

Up Next

This week sees the long-awaited release of MALEFICENT, while this X-mas she moves behind the camera for UNBROKEN. Given her stature, Jolie's been linked with tons of roles, including (potentially) SALT 2, but nothing is set yet.

CLICK IMAGE TO OPEN GALLERY & SEE MORE PICS...

Source: JoBlo.com

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+0
9:37PM on 05/26/2014

I agree with everyone

She's awesome, great actor, and stunning.
She's awesome, great actor, and stunning.
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5:29PM on 05/26/2014
Miss Jolie has always been one of those actresses that instantly makes a film more palatable/watchable, even if she's the only good thing about it. Agree with almost everything in the article, except for her best film: I'd place CHANGELING slightly below A MIGHTY HEART. Some folks balked at her playing a mixed-race woman, but she nailed that performance; shame that the film didn't get more recognition at the time. I've always felt that she deserved the Oscar nomination for this one more so than
Miss Jolie has always been one of those actresses that instantly makes a film more palatable/watchable, even if she's the only good thing about it. Agree with almost everything in the article, except for her best film: I'd place CHANGELING slightly below A MIGHTY HEART. Some folks balked at her playing a mixed-race woman, but she nailed that performance; shame that the film didn't get more recognition at the time. I've always felt that she deserved the Oscar nomination for this one more so than CHANGELING, if only for the fact that CHANGELING's final act is a little clunky.
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2:54PM on 05/26/2014
Eeeehhh. I don't think she's all that great, even in the dramas. Thought she over acted the hell out of Girl Interrupted & was just adequate in Changeling, which I liked. I haven't enjoyed ANY of her action films. But there is always, Gia, her hotness, & the work she does OFF camera....
Eeeehhh. I don't think she's all that great, even in the dramas. Thought she over acted the hell out of Girl Interrupted & was just adequate in Changeling, which I liked. I haven't enjoyed ANY of her action films. But there is always, Gia, her hotness, & the work she does OFF camera....
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11:29AM on 05/26/2014

One thing I've always respected about Angelina Jolie

is that, no matter how crazy her antics, she was always in demand as a leading actress. That shows how professional she is, that she never let her personal life get in the way of her work, a la Lindsay Lohan.

I loved the story about how, when she was working alongside her daughter (playing the young Princess Aurora) in MALEFICENT, she took the time to explain that "Mommy is playacting now."

A great actress, and no one vamps better these days.
is that, no matter how crazy her antics, she was always in demand as a leading actress. That shows how professional she is, that she never let her personal life get in the way of her work, a la Lindsay Lohan.

I loved the story about how, when she was working alongside her daughter (playing the young Princess Aurora) in MALEFICENT, she took the time to explain that "Mommy is playacting now."

A great actress, and no one vamps better these days.
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7:39AM on 05/26/2014
Stunning, beautiful, talented, caring and intelligent. She's an amazing woman. I also saw her for the first time in HACKERS and have been in love ever since.
Stunning, beautiful, talented, caring and intelligent. She's an amazing woman. I also saw her for the first time in HACKERS and have been in love ever since.
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8:25AM on 05/26/2014
Acid Burns, baby!
Acid Burns, baby!
7:25AM on 05/26/2014

MALEFICENT

...Is magnificent and a entertaining 'family movie' in the best way possible, where Maleficent becomes some kind of Shakespearian tragic figure. And Angelina owns the part. Maybe not a masterpiece like (in the family films category) How To Train Your Dragon 2, but a very good surprise.
...Is magnificent and a entertaining 'family movie' in the best way possible, where Maleficent becomes some kind of Shakespearian tragic figure. And Angelina owns the part. Maybe not a masterpiece like (in the family films category) How To Train Your Dragon 2, but a very good surprise.
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5:02AM on 05/26/2014
Badass indeed. She's very badass in Mr. & Mrs. Smith and I really like Salt. She needs her own dramatic vehicle like Gia to prove she's still got it.
Badass indeed. She's very badass in Mr. & Mrs. Smith and I really like Salt. She needs her own dramatic vehicle like Gia to prove she's still got it.
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2:34AM on 05/26/2014
I'm shocked that critics hated Changeling because I thought that movie was good and A Mighty Heart is criminally underrated together with The Bone Collector. I haven't seen Gia but will definetly make an effort.

However, when it comes to her action flicks (before everyone went all ga-ga over Gina Carano) Angelina Jolie was one of the few who could kick ass and looking convincing. Yeah, I know the common complaint is her skinny looking stature but people don't seem to mind a short-bus like
I'm shocked that critics hated Changeling because I thought that movie was good and A Mighty Heart is criminally underrated together with The Bone Collector. I haven't seen Gia but will definetly make an effort.

However, when it comes to her action flicks (before everyone went all ga-ga over Gina Carano) Angelina Jolie was one of the few who could kick ass and looking convincing. Yeah, I know the common complaint is her skinny looking stature but people don't seem to mind a short-bus like Tom Cruise running all over the place which is kinda double standards IMO.

Sure, we had Milla Jovovich who was super serious in her R.E movies but she became boring because of her vaguely unexplained on-off superhuman antics (how are we supposed to care about her?) Jennifer Garner was also OK, but to me.. Well, I dunno what it was but at times she gave off this "Roger Moore's James Bond" vibe as in can kick ass but looks misplaced in the heat of the action. The only contender would have to be Michelle Rodriguez (if only she had more starring roles)

I also thought Salt was decent but became increasingly over the top to the point of unintentional hilarity but I wouldn't blame Angelina because she gave it her all and I would totally welcome a sequel.

ps - Oh, you might want to change that "His" to "Her" on the list of top five films ;)
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2:21AM on 05/26/2014
double post
double post
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1:42AM on 05/26/2014
I'm really glad she's this week's pick for The Good, The Bad and the Badass. I think she's that rare actor where her skill and presence onscreen almost, kinda matches her reputation for wild exploits. Her journey from blood-vial wearing vamp to United Nations ambassador and matriarch of multiple adopted children is fascinating, but so are the roles she's taken. Lara Croft to Marianne Pearl, Fox to Lisa Rowe, Cash Reese to Gia Carangi...she can be the all-out, fantasy-fulfilling, overtly sexual
I'm really glad she's this week's pick for The Good, The Bad and the Badass. I think she's that rare actor where her skill and presence onscreen almost, kinda matches her reputation for wild exploits. Her journey from blood-vial wearing vamp to United Nations ambassador and matriarch of multiple adopted children is fascinating, but so are the roles she's taken. Lara Croft to Marianne Pearl, Fox to Lisa Rowe, Cash Reese to Gia Carangi...she can be the all-out, fantasy-fulfilling, overtly sexual action heroine, but she also, most definitely, CAN act. I think she was born to play Maleficent and I was 100% on board the moment she was cast. As an "untold story" exploring the villain's side of things, Maleficent is one of those films which hinges heavily on the casting of the title role. And yes, Angelina Jolie in Tomb Raider was my own personal Carrie Fisher in Return of the Jedi. There's that too.
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1:29AM on 05/26/2014

I adore her

Everything about her! Thanks for the great article and thank you for mentioning The Changeling. Much as I love her other movies (Girl, Interrupted and Gia especially), The Changeling really got me in the heart, she gave such a beautiful, touching performance.

Maleficent cannot get here fast enough for me I'm almost counting hours.

Everything about her! Thanks for the great article and thank you for mentioning The Changeling. Much as I love her other movies (Girl, Interrupted and Gia especially), The Changeling really got me in the heart, she gave such a beautiful, touching performance.

Maleficent cannot get here fast enough for me I'm almost counting hours.

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