Characters and Their Roles

                 Usually actors develop a particular character personality that is associated with them, and it becomes difficult to see them out of their typical role.  In the 2008 movie, Definitely, Maybe, directed by Adam Brooks, actor Ryan Reynolds plays a character that is different from his past roles.  In his latest movie, he plays a wonderful single father who is loving, compassionate, and sensible.  In other movies, he plays a perverted, childish, and chauvinistic young man who has no responsibility.  Therefore, Ryan Reynolds being in this type of new role is unexpected.

                Although it is not a negative aspect to step out of a character mold, the audience may simply be thinking that the movie was poorly cast.  In this particular instance, Reynolds did fit well into the role he played.  At first, I was thinking the director had not chosen the best actor for the film.  However, as the movie progressed, everything and everyone fell into place.  There are a few particular examples that demonstrate Reynolds' versatile ability to play different character personalities.

                The movie starts out showing Reynolds’ character putting his daughter to bed.  She asks him a question about his relationship with her mother.  At this time, the movie flashes back to his college years when he was dating more than one girl.  There is a scene where he is on a friendly date, and he ends up at the girl’s apartment afterwards.  He actually has a girlfriend back home.  After the first kiss with the date, he remembers his girlfriend and decides that is enough and pushes her away as he leaves.

              In his other roles, Reynolds would have simply had two girlfriends at the same time and would not have been concerned with their feelings.  In another scene at the end of the movie, he displays love and compassion when he tells an old girlfriend the truth about why he had kept her book.  He told her that it was the only thing he had left of her, so it was hard to give it up.  In other roles, he would have kept the book, and may have even thrown it away rather than doing the right thing.  This movie is a great example of how an actor can move into other roles.

Sherri Anderson

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