Latest Entertainment News Headlines

The Good, The Bad & The Badass: Ralph Fiennes

02.07.2016
After a few weeks off to cover Sundance, we're back with a look at the long career of an excellent English character actor...
Ralph Fiennes

Ralph Fiennes is among the most unpredictable actors of our generation. Back in the nineties, when he first became a big name (back when people still called him Ralph rather than the appropriate “Ra-fe”) it seemed like he’d go the Mel Gibson or Tom Cruise-root. While he was chilling as unrepentant Nazi Amon Goeth in SCHINDLER’S LIST, QUIZ SHOW and THE ENGLISH PATIENT made him a heartthrob. Alas, his big at American superstardom hit a snag with 1998’s disastrous THE AVENGERS, which paired him with Uma Thurman as sixties spies John Steed and Emma Peel. While a notable flop, Fiennes could have easily bounced back but it seemed to put him on a self-imposed other track, with him focusing his talents on more high-brow, arty fare save for the occasional Hollywood part in movies like RED DRAGON or his no-doubt profitable turn as Voldemort in the HARRY POTTER films.

But then, just when it seemed we had Fiennes pegged as a kind of Laurence Olivier-type, he goes and tears his image to shred with his hilariously profane turn in Martin McDonagh’s IN BRUGES. His first time cast as a so-called “hard-man”, Fiennes went on to other tough guy roles, including a juicy cameo as a contractor in THE HURT LOCKER (for his STRANGE DAYS director Kathryn Bigelow), the title part in the Shakespeare adaptation CORIOLANUS (which he also directed) and finally as the new, decidedly tough M in the James Bond movies.

 Again though, Fiennes reinvented himself with a hilarious turn as Monsieur Gustave in Wes Anderson’s THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL and this week’s HAIL, CAESAR! where he unforgettably tries to teach Alden Ehrenreich how to say “would that it were so simple.”

His Best Work

This is a tough one for Fiennes as he’s so damn good in everything. I’m tempted to go with Goeth in SCHINDLER’S LIST but I must admit I have a soft spot for his turn as Monsieur Gustave in THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL. He’s absolutely brilliant in his pursuit of his older conquests, through his adventures as an inmate and his effete, ultra polite way of dealing with everyone (“hello darling”) save for his occasional, hilarisouly foul outbursts (“What happened, my dear Zero, is I beat the living shit out of a sniveling little runt called Pinky Bandinski, who had the gall to question my virility. Because, if there's one thing we've learned from penny dreadfuls, it's that when you find yourself in a place like this, you must never be a candy ass; you've got to prove yourself from day one.”)

His Most Overrated Film

I remember when RED DRAGON came out it got pretty solid reviews, with many having the gall to say Bret Ratner had made a better adaptation of the material than Michael Mann. Rubbish. Luckily people have come around on this nonsensical way of thinking as MANHUNTER is a bloody masterpiece. None of the scenery-chewing big names in RED DRAGON is as good as the lower-key cast was in MANHUNTER, and that includes Fiennes as Dolarhyde, although of everyone else he probably fares the best. Still, Tom Noonan had this part down cold and Fiennes, despite his best efforts, can’t compare.

His Most Underrated Film

The financial failure of STRANGE DAYS is a bloody tragedy. Ten years before THE HURT LOCKER, Bigelow was already at the top of her game with this noirish story set in L.A on the cusp of the millennium. Fiennes plays an American as Lenny Nero, a corrupt ex-cop turned blackmarket dealer in SQUIDS, a blackmarket device that taps into the cerebral cortex and allows users to experience the recorders memories and physical sensations. This is a real gem of a movie that (shamefully) hasn’t even popped up on Blu-Ray although unlike other Lightstorm productions (THE ABYSS & TRUE LIES) at least a decent HD master exists on Netflix. Its incredible this wasn’t a smash as Fiennes was so damn good, while it should have turned co-star Angela Basset into a Sigourney Weaver-style badass. What a shame.

His Best Scene

I almost wet my pants seeing IN BRUGES during Fiennes’ introduction, from his insane reaction to Brendan Gleeson’s message, to his faux-sensitive tete-a-tete with his kids. It’s brilliant.

His Five Best Films

5. THE CONSTANT GARDENER
4. IN BRUGES
3. THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL
2. STRANGE DAYS
1. SCHINDLER'S LIST

Up Next

As always, Fiennes is much in demand. He’s due to voice Alfred Pennyworth in the LEGO BATMAN MOVIE, co-star in Gary Oldman’s first directorial effort since NIL BY MOUTH – FLYNG HORSE, and a part in the well-received at TIFF  - A BIGGER SPLASH  by I AM LOVE’s Luca Guadagnino

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

Source: JoBlo.com

RECOMMENDED MOVIE NEWS

MORE FUN FROM AROUND THE WEB

Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

+0
5:54PM on 02/08/2016
I did a quick search and it looks like you guys haven't done Gary Oldman yet? If that's really true than I implore you to correct tat ASAP. Also, I'd really loved to see you guys handle more classic directors and actors, whom many of your readers are likely to have heard of but have maybe never sought out their work (although obviously there will still be a portion that are familiar with them). Maybe do a more familiar face like Hitchcock and then someone like Ingmar Bergman, I mean shoot can
I did a quick search and it looks like you guys haven't done Gary Oldman yet? If that's really true than I implore you to correct tat ASAP. Also, I'd really loved to see you guys handle more classic directors and actors, whom many of your readers are likely to have heard of but have maybe never sought out their work (although obviously there will still be a portion that are familiar with them). Maybe do a more familiar face like Hitchcock and then someone like Ingmar Bergman, I mean shoot can you imagine if you were responsible for turning, even a handful of people, some people into Bergman fans? Now, that's something you could really be proud of!
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
2:52PM on 02/09/2016
I can't remember what movie was coming out, but I'm pretty positive Gary Oldman has been featured here. Bumbray made a case for Air Force One being his most overrated movie.
I can't remember what movie was coming out, but I'm pretty positive Gary Oldman has been featured here. Bumbray made a case for Air Force One being his most overrated movie.
3:26PM on 02/08/2016
Still one of my favorite actors; though, on a recent revisit to Strange Days, I'm not sure it completely holds up
Still one of my favorite actors; though, on a recent revisit to Strange Days, I'm not sure it completely holds up
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
+0
1:58PM on 02/08/2016

Such a great actor

But for his most underrated movie, I would say it's Istvan Szabo's SUNSHINE, where Fiennes portrays three generations of a family.
But for his most underrated movie, I would say it's Istvan Szabo's SUNSHINE, where Fiennes portrays three generations of a family.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
9:23AM on 02/08/2016
i'm sorry i called you an inanimate object... i was upset.
i'm sorry i called you an inanimate object... i was upset.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
8:25AM on 02/08/2016
Ralph Fiennes is one of my very favorite actors working today. He can be terrifying (as in Schindler's List and Coriolanus) and sublimely hilarious (The Grand Budapest Hotel and Hail, Caesar! - where his two scenes stole the movie). Though I always knew he was a good actor, it probably wasn't until The Constant Gardner and In Bruges that I really started paying attention to the man's career.
Ralph Fiennes is one of my very favorite actors working today. He can be terrifying (as in Schindler's List and Coriolanus) and sublimely hilarious (The Grand Budapest Hotel and Hail, Caesar! - where his two scenes stole the movie). Though I always knew he was a good actor, it probably wasn't until The Constant Gardner and In Bruges that I really started paying attention to the man's career.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
4:39AM on 02/08/2016

Definitely the 'Laurence Olivier' of the Millennial Generation

Although masterpiece / awesome / kick - ass performances in "Schindler's List", Strange Days" & "Skyfall" aside....the fanboy inside me had always envisioned someone (in face) looking more like Benedict Cumberbatch for Lord Voldemort.

No offense to the Rafe-ster.
Although masterpiece / awesome / kick - ass performances in "Schindler's List", Strange Days" & "Skyfall" aside....the fanboy inside me had always envisioned someone (in face) looking more like Benedict Cumberbatch for Lord Voldemort.

No offense to the Rafe-ster.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
1:36AM on 02/08/2016
I think he's a good actor but not that much of a badass. However, I fully agree that Strange Days is his most underrated work. The movie itself is great too.
I think he's a good actor but not that much of a badass. However, I fully agree that Strange Days is his most underrated work. The movie itself is great too.
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
-5
12:09AM on 02/08/2016
As far as am concerned he's only had one great role. That's Schindlers List.
The rest have been humdrum at best.
That's because his head is so far up his behind, he's unable to see the light!
As far as am concerned he's only had one great role. That's Schindlers List.
The rest have been humdrum at best.
That's because his head is so far up his behind, he's unable to see the light!
Your Reply:



Please email me when someone replies to my comment
View All Comments

Latest Entertainment News Headlines


Top
Loading...

Featured Youtube Videos

Views and Counting