By John H. Foote
The Race for the Academy Award for Best Actor has changed yet again, with scenes from a trailer making it clear Christian Bale is going to be a nominee for Best Actor for his alarmingly accurate performance of Dick Cheney.
Bale, known to be among the finest actors of his generation, immersed himself completely in the role, once again gaining a great deal of weight, becoming the character. The trailer shows that Bale nails that lazy, hesitant speaking manner Cheney has and the way his unfeeling eyes bore into you, sizing you up. The clips we see (with Sam Rockwell as George W. Bush offering Cheney the position of Vice President) are extraordinary looking, as we see Cheney manipulate Bush, as he did his entire presidency.
The film, Vice, does not open until December but I suspect there will be screenings in November for the Academy and critics, and screeners will be sent out to critics groups and the guilds.
Directed by Adam McKay, the film is said to be the film Oliver Stone wanted W. (2008) to be, but never quite was.
Bale should have been nominated last year for his powerfully stoic performance in Hostiles (2017) but was snubbed. He won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for The Fighter (2010) and could be holding an Oscar for Best Actor this year. Watch out, Viggo Mortensen.
View the trailer here
John H. Foote is a well-recognized Canadian film critic/historian who has been an active critic for 30 years. His deep love for the movies began at a very young age. He began his career as co-host of the popular TV show Reel to Real where he remained for nine years. While on TV he began dabbling in education, eventually ascending to Director of the Toronto Film School, where he also taught film history. After leaving the college to care for his wife, he returned to teaching at Humber College where he taught both Film History and Method Acting Theory. John has written two books: “Clint Eastwood – Evolution of a Filmmaker” and the upcoming “Spielberg – American Film Visionary”. He is currently working on two books, one about the films of the seventies and another on the films of Martin Scorsese. Through his career he has worked in TV, radio, print and the web. John has interviewed everyone in the industry (more than 300 interviews) except Jack Nicholson, he says sadly. Highlights include Martin Scorsese, Tom Cruise, Meryl Streep Robert Duvall, Jane Fonda, Francis Ford Coppola and Kathryn Bigelow.