10 wild roles of Nicholas Cage: the best films with the actor

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On April 21, the ironic action movie “The Unbearable Weight of Huge Talent”, in which Nicholas Cage plays… Nicholas Cage, was to be released in Russia. But did not come out.

In this selection – the best works of the artist: not only everyone’s favorite “Faceless” and the cult “Mandy”, but also a touching drama about pigs and oriental thrash anti-utopia.

We have arranged all the characters in the order of adequacy – from the calmest to the most uncontrollably violent.


Who is playing: a bearded hermit who avenges his beloved pig
Nicholas Cage type: sad

What is the film about? There is a hut in the middle of the forest. There lives an unhewn overgrown man and his faithful pig. In the afternoon they go out to look for truffles, and in the evenings the recluse tells his pet stories by the fireplace. One day, robbers break into the house and steal a piglet, after which the hero goes in search of a friend in a neighboring city.

What is special. “Pig” is a surprisingly tender and sad film about a man who was trampled by the big world. In Cage’s eyes, it is not animal rage, as usual, but existential crisis and sadness. Instead of shouting and screaming, the actor only wanders silently through the noisy streets, and in the finale he performs, perhaps, the most powerful part in his career. No wonder this work is Cage calls a favorite along with the films “Leaving Las Vegas“And” Resurrecting the Dead. “


Who is playing: frustrated screenwriter
Nicholas Cage type: neurotic

What is the film about? Nicholas Cage plays insecure screenwriter Charlie Kaufman, who takes on a new job after the premiere of “Being John Malkovich.” As a story, he chooses an adaptation of the journalist’s book “The Orchid Thief”. The material turns out to be so complex that the author begins to doubt the reality around him and decides to write a screenplay about how he tries to write a screenplay.

What is special. The character from “Adaptation” is the complete antithesis of Nicholas Cage, whom we are used to seeing on screens. Here he is more like a nervous and insecure urban intellectual a la Woody Allen: constantly criticizes himself for incompetence, is ashamed of baldness and is afraid to talk to girls. For this unusual role, where Cage plays the alter ego of screenwriter Charlie Kaufman, the actor received a well-deserved Oscar nomination.

Raising Arizona

Who is playing: a charming thief
Nicholas Cage type: charismatic

What is the film about? Thief Hai seduces a policewoman and marries her. After a while, the couple thinks about the baby and decides to kidnap a child from a large family. Thus begins the absurd parental odyssey that will completely change the lives of the heroes.

What is special. The first major role in the artist’s career determined his role for many years to come. Hai is a typical rascal. He achieves his goals with cunning and cunning, and confuses women with a brilliant smile and a Hollywood squint. Sloppy, uncollected, but infinitely sincere in all his impulses, Cage’s character becomes another charming little man in the filmography of the Cohen brothers.

Wonderland Willie

Who is playing: a silent stranger killing animatronics
Nicholas Cage type: cool

What is the film about? A man without a name and past has an accident near a provincial town. Since his wallet is empty, he agrees to work out the cost of repairs. The hero just needs to spend the night in the children’s shopping center “Wonderland Willie”. However, there is a nuance: after sunset, rusty animatronics turn into bloodthirsty monsters.

What is special. Cage doesn’t say a word in this movie. He silently tears off the heads of rabid dolls, and during breaks he drinks soda and plays pinball. The role in Willie’s Wonderland is a perfect example of the so-called expressionist acting method, to which the star has remained faithful for many years. According to him, you need to play not realistically, but as in the old silent movie. That’s why all the frantic energy here lies in Cage’s bloodshot face.

Leaving Las Vegas

Who is playing: an unfortunate screenwriter who got drunk
Nicholas Cage type: forever drunk

What is the film about? Hollywood screenwriter Ben Sanderson loses his job and leaves to riot in Las Vegas. There he meets the charming sex worker Sir. After spending the night with a woman, the hero falls in love, but is afraid to get closer because of internal demons.

What is special. The most important role in the actor’s career, for which he received the coveted “Oscar”. In the first thirty minutes of the film, Cage does not deviate from his standard image of an eccentric: he sings during sex, hangs out in bars and drinks while driving. However, gradually defiantly dirty aesthetics “Leaving Las Vegas” gives way to the usual melodrama. Ben Sanderson, for all his sinister aura, turns out to be a simple broken man. Such characters in the filmography of the artist, unfortunately or fortunately, are rare.

Vampire kiss

Who is playing: odious vampire
Nicholas Cage type: arrogant

What is the film about? Manager Peter, obsessed with beautiful girls, suddenly becomes a vampire: one of the mistresses bites a man and makes him his slave. Gradually, he himself begins to feel a thirst for blood – though it is unclear what it is dictated: a real vampirism or an attempt to brighten up the joyless office life.

What is special. If only The Vampire Kiss didn’t come out twelve years before The American Psychopath, it’s easy it would be call a parody version of the classic with Christian Bale. There are really a lot of intersections here: insane careerism, stuffy office scenery and an actor-meme in the lead role.

It was from this film that Cage’s recognizable style of acting was born – actor’s expressionism, bulging eyes and spontaneous screams. Nicholas does his best to get the viewer out of the comfort zone. His pride as a star is, of course, does not hide and considers her one of the best in her career.

Resurrecting the dead

Who is playing: paramedics on the verge of a nervous breakdown
Nicholas Cage type: exhausted

What is the film about? Paramedic Frank Pierce is about to go crazy. He is grieving the loss of his patients and is doing everything he can to get him fired. The last chance of the hero to be saved is the girl Mary, whose father is slowly dying in the hospital.

What is special. In one of his darkest works, Martin Scorsese slowly immerses the hero in the mud of the streets of New York. Frank Pierce is another “Taxi Driver”, a sad witness to the destruction of American society. Exhausted Nicholas Cage, who sees the ghosts of unsaved patients, the director becomes almost not a biblical character. The way to salvation, as always, lies through the sufferings and horrors of life.

Prisoners of the land of ghosts

Who is playing: a criminal who can take off at any moment
Nicholas Cage type: explosive

What is the film about? The world of the future. A bank robber in Samurai Town is released to carry out his mission for the rest of his life. The hero will have to save the granddaughter of the local governor’s politician in five days, otherwise bombs will be detonated on his body.

What is special. The film by the Japanese master Zion Sono is the rare case when the behavior of Nicholas Cage fully corresponds to the aesthetics of the screen world. “Prisoners of the Land of Ghosts” is a wild mix of thrash action, surreal oriental parables and reflections on the national trauma of the descendants of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The actor is not just like that calls the work one of the craziest in his career: everything that happens on the screen is reminiscent of the Japanese kabuki theater with colorful Japanese outfits and masks.

No faces

Who is playing: John Travolta
Nicholas Cage type: two-faced

What is the film about? While terrorist Castor Troy, played by John Travolta, is in a coma, FBI agents decide to send their agent Sean Archer to the enemy’s rear. With the help of a special operation, he puts on the face of the criminal and tries to find out a cunning plan of the group. However, Castor soon regains consciousness: he steals Sean’s identity and begins to ruin his life.

What is special. Nicholas Cage plays John Travolta, who plays Nicholas Cage. It’s easy to get confused in the acting labyrinths of John Wu’s film: the only conduit to all meanings is the facial expressions of the meme artist. Here he sings in church, plays the part of a famous family man and a murderous psychopath at the same time, and laughs ominously about every ten minutes. Every self-respecting star should dream of such a “film comic” cartoon role.


Who is playing: a lumberjack whose wife was killed by sectarians
Nicholas Cage type: enraged

What is the film about? Sectarians break into the house of the lumberjack and his wife. They steal his wife and burn her in front of her lover. However, the hero does not give up: he drinks a bottle of alcohol for a few sips and immediately goes on the path of war.

What is special. In “Mandy”, Cage is given carte blanche for an eccentric: his hero fights with villains on chainsaws and screams furiously while sitting on the toilet. Director Panos Cosmatos, who dedicated the film to his dead father, uses Nicholas as a living personification of grief, which knows no boundaries and destroys the mind from within.

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