Influencing through the Decades

         Throughout the years our society has been entertained by countless unforgettable movies. Like classics such as King Kong, Gone with the Wind, and Titanic, we never forget the people who play such important roles. To make a great movie, chemistry of actors is a must and someone who is gifted in the craft of acting and wins over the heart of the viewer.

         The more movies I watch the more I become aware of the differences between horrible acting and an actor who is close to perfection. A movie that I will never forget is the movie Monster, directed in 2003 by Patty Jenkins. Based on a true story, starring Charlize Theron this beautiful, this movie showcases a young actress who transforms herself into the bloodcurdling spitting image of Aileen Wuornos. She is one of America's first female serial killers who was the first sentenced and killed by the death penalty. She committed terrible crimes, but no one knew until the movie what a horrendous life and the things from her past that had influenced her actions. This movie I will never forget because it is a dead-on accurate true story about this extremely conflicted individual, but more so because of the incredible acting. Charlize Theron stole away the performance and made me really feel how her character did and gave a deeper insight to the movie.

         Another movie which we watched in class that is a pure classic, adventure, fantasy is King Kong, directed in 1933 by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack. I have seen now both the new version, directed by Peter Jackson in 2005, and the old; and both are extremely entertaining. I thought the use of visuals in the 1933 version added a lot to the movie. It was interesting that during this time they had the advancements to make the dinosaurs, King Kong, and all the other exotic animals used in the film. The actors in the movie stole away the show, and keep my attention. Fay Wray, who played the role of Anne Darrow, portrayed her character so well and trapped the audience with her stifling screams and fear. The state-of-art visual used in King Kong, entertaining storyline and touching ending makes it a definite classic.

         Before attending this class I never thought I would be able to sit through a black and white movie and especially not a movie without sound. With both these components gone, I appreciate the work the actors have to do to relay the message and meaning to the audience. After watching older movies in our film class, as well as more recent ones, I can see how actors have evolved drastically but still have the same motive. People enjoy action, drama, suspense and anything innovative. Last night I was watching the Academy Awards, and Martin Scorsese’s The Departed won best picture. I had watched the movie just a while back and was amazed by some of the acting given by the actors. Leonardo Dicaprio and Matt Damon were among the few celebrities that had given an impeccable performance. I thought they rightfully, hands down won the award.

         Leonardo Dicaprio has had an extremely successful career and keeps year after year starring in winning motion pictures. He first turned heads with his breathtaking performance of the heartbreaking true story Titanic, directed in 1997 by James Cameron. In this past year he has starred in my recent two favorite movies, The Departed and Blood Diamond, directed by Edward Zwick. Blood Diamond incorporated amazing acting with an important issue occurring in our society. I believe every American should see this movie and realize the horror that is going on in other countries because of our greed. The actors sold me on this movie, and now I am passionate on the movie’s purpose. I hope that it can open people’s eyes and end the terror that is occurring in Africa day after day.

         Actors can change how a person feels about a movie. Even if you have an amazing storyline, an actor can either make or break the success of the film. Actors in film have evolved, and I believe movies are at their peak with the talent that is showing through the screen.

Jaclyn Ramage

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