Friday, 11 May 2012

Fascinating Faces: Looper, Lawless and Gangster Squad

I've seen some fascinating faces in trailers over the last few weeks.  Three stars many of us know and love, still recognizable but undeniably transformed.  I am stunned by these faces and already itching to see more of the performances.  But how much of my excitement is just down to the make up and how much is due to the men behind the masks?

I offer you exhibits A, B and C as evidence.

Exhibit A: Joseph Gordon-Levitt in Looper

The Holly wood Reporter um... reported that 'Thanks to three hours in the makeup chair each morning, the actor transformed into a younger version of Bruce Willis for the role – in which the duo plays the same character at different ages.'

If you're not convinced about the transformation or just sad to see the handsome JGL mutilated, check out this little video I found on YouTube for a close comparison of the two actors.

Exhibit B: Guy Pearce in Lawless

Now I'm not sure what they've done to Pearce's face here but watching the trailer suggests this is going to be another fantastic performance to look out for.  In fact I don't even think this is down to make up.  Instead I think it's a combination of Pearce's slicked back hair, accent and tone of voice and most of all the faces he pulls in the trailer below.  Some might say this is bordering on OTT but I can't wait to see this performance.

Exhibit C: Sean Penn in The Gangster Squad

MTV says: 'A centerpiece of the trailer, it's hard to miss Sean Penn even under all of that makeup... The trailer gives lots of screen time to Penn, and when you also consider the prosthetics on his face, it's not hard to imagine that Warner Bros. would make a Best Supporting Actor push for him come Oscar season'.

He looks almost like something grotesque out of Dick Tracy.  But it's not just the make up and prosthetics, Penn seems totally transformed here.  It's another performance that looks incredible and will no doubt be a lot of fun to watch.

So are we in for a treat with these three or what?  And how much of these performances will come down to the physically transformed faces of the actors and how much is down to their acting skills.  It's a question that has bugged me ever since seeing one of my favourite performances ever on screen.  No doubt aided by magnificent make-up, but also a testament to the incredible talent of Charlize Theron, if you haven't seen Monster, I highly recommend it.  Never has a star been so unrecognizable and so brilliantly lost within a real-life character.