Nicolas Cage has become a bit of a joke in recent years. The actor started his career with incredible performances, earning accolades and collecting an Academy Award along the way. But in the last decade or so, Cage has made a myriad of odd career choices, appearing in films that just aren’t great, to put it mildly. On top of that, his acting style, which has always been…interesting, is now the fodder for Internet memes. However, as we found out in a recent interview, Nic Cage sure does know his French cinema.
Recently, the actor published an interview he had with legendary filmmaker Paul Schrader, in the aptly-titled Interview magazine. And in that interview, as Cage and Schrader discuss the new film “First Reformed” (which is incredible, FYI), the discussion turned to Schrader’s book, “Transcendental Style in Film.”
What followed next isn’t what you would expect from “Internet Meme” Cage, but actually what you might hear from “Academy Award Winner” Cage, who had a lot to say on the topic:
“I’m glad you brought up ‘Transcendental Style’ because there is a part in it that talks about transcendence and immanence in Robert Bresson’s ‘Diary of a Country Priest,’ which I thought collided beautifully in ‘First Reformed’—immanence in terms of Ethan’s natural and powerful internal performance, and transcendence in terms of how it transported me to another dimension. I couldn’t help thinking, while I was watching the movie, about the Earth itself being the Holy Grail fortified by the blood of Christ in the soil, and how it’s being destroyed by large industry. Global warming is an element in ‘First Reformed.’”
Yep, Nicolas Cage just brought up famous French filmmaker Robert Bresson and how the film relates to the newest Schrader project. Not only that, he did it in an incredibly eloquent and thoughtful way. That’s a long way from a guy who was just talking the other day about wanting to play the Joker or Doctor Doom in a Marvel movie, or the actor that put on a clinic on overacting in the remake of “The Wicker Man.”
So, let’s never forget that Cage might be a master at scene-chewing and odd career choices, but he’s also a lover of French film and knows a thing or two about the history of cinema. Respect.