You either hate him or love him! That’s the least you can say about Nicolas Cage. During his 40-year career, he starred in more than 100 movies. Cage has done everything from rom-coms to over-the-top action movies and from thrilling sci-fi films to poignant dramas. However, no matter how risky the role, how unusual the script or how extreme the cinematography, no role or film could have prepared him for “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent”.
In this latest movie from director Tom Gormican (“That Awkward Moment”), he takes on the role of a lifetime as he portrays himself. The results? An extremely entertaining, action-packed and extraordinary performed must-see meta-film!
Nick Cage (Cage) is going through a very rough patch. It’s been a few years since his latest movie, and it seems that no role is coming his way anything soon as most directors go in a different direction with their cast. This impacts both his professional and personal life.
Cage’s in the midst of his divorce from Olivia (Sharon Horgan) and reconnecting with his teenage daughter, Addy (Lily Mo Sheen), doesn’t go well. So, to save his marriage and career, he takes on a gig he never thought he would do. His agent (Neil Patrick Harris) encourages him to go to Mallorca to attend Javi Gutierrez’s (Pedro Pascal) birthday celebration.
However making an appearance at a superfan’s birthday party soon becomes being becoming a world class spy when Cage is recruited by the CIA agent Vivian (Tiffany Haddish) to shadow Javi. Cage’s biggest fan seems to be the head of a crime organisation that kidnapped a teenage girl for political reasons.
Cage is undoubtedly a man of many talents, but is he capable of misleading and defeating a kidnapper and navigate a world of espionage, deceit and lies to save the girl, himself, his loved ones and his career?
When “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” was pitched to Cage, he felt ‘absolute horror’. A movie about an actor playing himself could quickly turn into a self-absorbed messy, and unhinged film. However, “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” is everything but that.
Do we still need to tell you what a superb cast this movie can count on? Probably not, but we going to do it anyway. Cage’s flair, presence, and ability to captivate the audience are going through the roof! The fictional storyline doesn’t feel fictional because Cage brings so much (tongue-in-cheek) humour, wittiness and emotions to the film that it feels like we’re watching a documentary instead.
There’s also a special performance of “Nicky”, Cage’s imaginary friend, which gives Cage the perfect opportunity to act opposite himself. This results in the funniest but weirdest scenes. While this is undoubtedly Cage’s movie, Pascal (“The Equalizer 2”, “Kingsman: The Golden Circle”) does an incredible job in stealing or at least sharing the spotlight.
He puts on a terrific, entertaining and delightful performance. The impeccable and highly natural-feeling chemistry between him and Cage is what keeps this movie going. Their bonding scenes are probably the most hysterical ones. When their jokes don’t hit the target 100% anymore, their action-packed moments certainly provide the film with much-needed car chases, explosions and gunfire.
Unfortunately, the supporting roles don’t have a lot of work to do, and that’s a shame. Horgan (“Dating Amber”, “Game Night”) certainly provides many memorable one-liners, and Haddish (“The Secret Life of Pets 2”, “Like a Boss”) adds many more hilarious moments to this movie. It’s just a shame that both roles are highly underused. We would have loved to see so much more of these strong women.
This movie hinges on the great performances and excellent chemistry, and therefore the storyline feels a bit secondary. Some moments feel out of place due to the lack of context, and some scenes are dragging on.
The 107 minutes runtime feels long, but it certainly gives Gormican and writer Kevin Etten (“Ghosted”, “Reaper”) the time to include as many subtle and not-so-subtle nods to Cage’s career! From “Face/Off” to Many and from “Con Air” to “Guarding Tess”, your ‘Nicolas Cage bingo card’ will be complete before you know it.
You don’t have to be familiar with those references and Cage’s filmography to enjoy “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent”. The movie is packed with humour, action, top acting performances and unbeatable buddy chemistry between Cage and Pascal. Therefore “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” becomes the most fun, thrilling, and solid meta-film you’ll see in years.
22nd April 2022
THE QUICK SELL
In this action-packed comedy, Nicolas Cage plays Nick Cage, channeling his iconic characters as he's caught between a superfan (Pedro Pascal) and a CIA agent (Tiffany Haddish).