Here the thing; I know for a fact that Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Jimmy Smits, Christopher Lee and the like are all talented actors. I’ve seen them act with great skill. But the Star Wars prequels are on Space right now and if I’d never seen any of those people act before I’d swear they were the worst actors I’ve ever seen.
I just watched a scene, right this moment, in “The Phantom Menace” where Queen Amidala, Boss Nass and the Jedi are planning the big battle, and Portman is acting WORSE than I’ve ever seen Steven Seagal act. She’s worse than Jean Claude Van Damme. She’s worse than Madonna, a lot worse, in fact. she’s worse than Britney Spears. She’s worse than anyone I have ever seen in a mainstream Hollywood film; I’m talking college movie bad, porn movie bad, elementary school Christmas play bad. She’s delivering all her lines in a flat, toneless drone that makes we wonder if she wasn’t acting at gunpoint.
And everyone else is just as bad. Neither Liam Neeson nor Ewan MacGregor look like they’re taking the movie seriously or even trying to act; they’re not as bad as Portman but they sure aren’t giving it much of an effort.
I hadn’t watched these movies in years and the acting is way worse than I remember it being… in fact, it’s distractingly bad. It’s the worst acting I’ve seen in a real movie in as long as I can remember.
Now, these are fucking great actors. Liam Neeson is awesome. Ewan MacGregor is as versatile a performer as you’ll ever watch. Natalie Portman has delivered any number of terrific performances. So it can’t be the acting. It’s gotta be the direction.
Hayden Christensen gets a bad rap for his acting in the two prequels he was in solely because he didn’t really have a reputation in anything else. You know the others are good actors, so you don’t say “Liam Neeson sucks” because you’ve seen him act so well is so many other pictures. But Christensen didn’t get that break. But here’s the thing:
- He WAS very good in “Broken Glass,” and
- I know people who knew him when he was building his career and by all accounts he was as talented as anyone else in the room.
He’s got to have the most undeservedly bad reputation in acting history.