Tom Cruise the actor (ie forget all the Scientology freak stuff, his intensely annoying public personality, his plastic looks, etc): classic or dud?

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and plz cite specific references for claims that he's a good/bad actor

dream logic, Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:48 (seventeen years ago) link

you're not the boss of me

Roxymuzak, Mrs. Carbohydrate (roxymuzak), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:50 (seventeen years ago) link

To be fair, I think he was perfectly respectable in, say, "Jerry MacGuire" (sp?), "Risky Business" and....ummmm.....well, those two. He was good in "Rain Man," I guess. Beyond that, he's just too high maintenance to endorse.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:52 (seventeen years ago) link

I always liked him in "Taps"

Roxymuzak, Mrs. Carbohydrate (roxymuzak), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:54 (seventeen years ago) link

I can't think of a single performance of his I enjoyed watching. Not even "Risky Business" when I was but a pre-adolescent lad with no taste (so many better 80s teen-sex flicks, with better actors too).

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:54 (seventeen years ago) link

ILTC

jed_ (jed), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:55 (seventeen years ago) link

He's good. But only in a pretty limited range of roles, essentially where he has to be a slick, try-too-hard, assholish-but-ultimately-vulnerable jock kinda guy. I think he was pretty good in Eyes Wide Shut.

GRF, Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:56 (seventeen years ago) link

I don't think I've seen a Tom Cruise film I hate, but recently (Collateral, Minority Report, Magnolia, Vanilla Sky, Eyes Wide Shut etc) his Tom Cruise-ness seems to over-ride my usual ability to see the character as a character, not as an-actor-playing-a-character. And then it becomes a Tom Cruise vehicle and not a film he happens to be in, which is the way I watch films starring other actors.

(I am the anti-Shakey Mo!)

ailsa (ailsa), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:57 (seventeen years ago) link

yeah I like him in eyes wide shut too, but it plays off his weird vacant look, so i think his performance being good in that is more a matter of the direction and the script fitting his phonyness than anything else

kyle (akmonday), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:58 (seventeen years ago) link

"slick, try-too-hard, assholish-but-ultimately-vulnerable" - isn't this the only role he EVER PLAYS?

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:59 (seventeen years ago) link

I enjoyed him in the Mission Impossible movies (or rather, I enjoyed the Mission Impossible movies), and he was okay/interesting at least (especially as a drunk at the beginning) in The Last Samurai.

Huk-L (Huk-L), Thursday, 29 December 2005 17:59 (seventeen years ago) link

"The Last Samurai" = Dances With Japanese People.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I'll stand up for Rain Man and The Color of Money, where, yes, he plays "slick, try-too-hard, assholish-but-ultimately-vulnerable" but he'd just started out on that road and it hadn't worn thin.

And Jerry Maguire, because it's *nice* (I am such a girl!)

ailsa (ailsa), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:02 (seventeen years ago) link

Forgot about "Taps"...yeah, that was decent. "Top Gun" is great, but not for the reasons Tom would prefer.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:02 (seventeen years ago) link

"The Last Samurai" = Dances With Japanese People.
-- Shakey Mo Collier (audiobo...), December 29th, 2005. (Shakey Mo Collier) (later)

HAHAHAHAHAHAAAA

jed_ (jed), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:08 (seventeen years ago) link

when he screams he sounds like a girly little kid. so does tom hanks. some people shouldn't scream in movies.

scott seward (scott seward), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:37 (seventeen years ago) link

He has this annoying tendency to clap his hands in EVERY FUCKING FILM. A.R.G.H.
Top Gun was indeed a great film. That sexy encounter with Val Kilmer who obviously wants to grind his teeth over Tom's family jewel is just a classic, on par with the Al Pacino & Robert DeNiro showdown in Heat. *rofl*

Nathalie (stevie nixed), Thursday, 29 December 2005 18:46 (seventeen years ago) link

i really liked him in The Firm, when i saw that, which was years ago.

i am not a nugget (stevie), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:02 (seventeen years ago) link

except for when he does his OMG DUDE I AM ACTING SO HARD RIGHT NOW thing, he's not bad

gabbneb (gabbneb), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:03 (seventeen years ago) link

his role in Magnolia was funny. in hindsight, it's like a self-parody of how he is now.

DR. O. RLY? (eman), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:16 (seventeen years ago) link

He does have SUCH a schtick by this point in his career that it is hard to see the roles he is playing for themselves sometimes. He's not terrible - certainly not my favorite, but there are a few of his movies I would watch if I ran into them on television.

Big Loud Mountain Ape (Big Loud Mountain Ape), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:17 (seventeen years ago) link

he was ~*tyte*~ in collateral. "yo, homey!"

I GUARONTEE ::cajun voice:: (Adrian Langston), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:20 (seventeen years ago) link

Synopsis for Losin' It

Coming-of-age sex comedy about a group of teenage friends traveling to Mexico to lose their virginity. During their trip they pick up a wacky lady also going to Mexico to get a quickie divorce.

Tom Cruise stars as one of the "friends." The "wacky lady" is Shelley Long. And yes, the movie culminates in a steamy encounter between the two.

elmo, patron saint of nausea (allocryptic), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:36 (seventeen years ago) link

He was great in Magnolia though, especially since his stock dynamo-asshole character was played for pathos.

elmo, patron saint of nausea (allocryptic), Thursday, 29 December 2005 19:41 (seventeen years ago) link

You have to see his brief appearance in the special features of the War of the Worlds DVD to get the full flavor of his personal weirdness. He's totally manic, keeps repeating the word "rogue," as in "The aliens are rogue! They've gone rogue! They're ET gone ROGUE."
He seemed like he was speeding.
I don't hate any of his movies, though. I loved Magnolia.

Beth Parker (Beth Parker), Thursday, 29 December 2005 20:30 (seventeen years ago) link

He's OK. I never really mind him in a movie, and neither is he ever the main reason I go to see something. He's charismatic in a limited way. I even thought he was OK as Mr. Homoerotic Blond Vampire. But I admit his recent offscreen bazookishness has made him less appealing. Like, that emotional stiltedness isn't really covering up for a decent guy trying to get past his insecurities, it's covering up for a bitter egomaniac trying to suppress his next rant about psychotherapy and LOVING KATIE HOLMES. (Which is no surprise, but I didn't need to have it so vividly illustrated.)

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Thursday, 29 December 2005 20:50 (seventeen years ago) link

(in other words, it's sorta hard to forget all the Scientology freak stuff, his intensely annoying public personality, etc.)

gypsy mothra (gypsy mothra), Thursday, 29 December 2005 20:51 (seventeen years ago) link

i'm as bored with hating on tom cruise as i am with hating on paris hilton

J.D. (Justyn Dillingham), Thursday, 29 December 2005 20:54 (seventeen years ago) link

me too. and I still hate them.

tremendoid (tremendoid), Thursday, 29 December 2005 21:43 (seventeen years ago) link

I liked him well enough in Magnolia, perhaps because he was so playing a caricature of himself that I didn't notice the Tom Cruise-ality that usually bleeds through his characters and turns me off. He was excellent in 'Taps' too.

M. White (Miguelito), Thursday, 29 December 2005 21:49 (seventeen years ago) link

eyes wide shut is one of the greatest films ever made

i def. think he shld make a biopic of l. ron hubbard, w/ Phillip Seymour Hoffman as Jack Parsons

Ward Fowler (Ward Fowler), Thursday, 29 December 2005 22:45 (seventeen years ago) link

(and Kenneth Anger as Crowley?)

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 22:52 (seventeen years ago) link

If there were an actual muscle used for acting, his would be pumped in every scene.

God, that's an unpleasant image.

Ian in Brooklyn, Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:01 (seventeen years ago) link

He's the male Julia Roberts. Overpaid, not particularly gifted actor with inexplicable sexual magnetism.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:06 (seventeen years ago) link

who's also already been around WAY too long.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:07 (seventeen years ago) link

He's most effective when a director exploits his ambitious quasi-machismo (The Color of Money, Rain Man, Jerry Maguire, Magnolia)

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn (Alfred Soto), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:10 (seventeen years ago) link

wrong.

gabbneb (gabbneb), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:14 (seventeen years ago) link

Magnolia is a terrible movie. I really don't understand the cult of PTA.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:18 (seventeen years ago) link

he's best at his most understated

gabbneb (gabbneb), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:21 (seventeen years ago) link

he's a great banterer

gabbneb (gabbneb), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:24 (seventeen years ago) link

Magnolia IS terrible, but his segment was the best -- except when he's called upon to really act, as when he has to look sad and red-eyed over the death of estranged pa Jason Robards.

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn (Alfred Soto), Thursday, 29 December 2005 23:54 (seventeen years ago) link

I think Born on the Fourth of July is both Tom Cruise and Oliver Stone's best movie, maybe because the subject matter deflates both of their usual tendencies.

Earl Nash (earlnash), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Born on the 4th of July was on TV a few days ago and honestly, the "drunk crippled vets starting fights in Mexico" sequences made me bust out laughing.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:01 (seventeen years ago) link

I mean it was like a movie version of "Shut Up, Little Man".

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:02 (seventeen years ago) link

Tom Cruise = Tom Hanks. Iconic and in touch with the average man. Boring, but what are you going to do about it?

Mitya (mitya), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:38 (seventeen years ago) link

name me an 'average man' Tom Cruise has played

gabbneb (gabbneb), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:40 (seventeen years ago) link

they couldn't be less alike, afaic

gabbneb (gabbneb), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:42 (seventeen years ago) link

I don't really like them both, but at least Hanks knows how to be funny in a dress.

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:44 (seventeen years ago) link

his character in legend was pretty 'average man'

cutty (mcutt), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:46 (seventeen years ago) link

http://www.ixplosive.com/tom/ecards/Legend2.jpg

cutty (mcutt), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:47 (seventeen years ago) link

haha - I was wondering how long it was gonna take before someone brought up "Legend". THAT may be the only Tom Cruise movie I've enjoyed (and most of what I enjoyed about it was Tim Curry).

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:47 (seventeen years ago) link

who, this guy?

http://wlocks.world.free.fr/heroic_fantasy/heroic/cinema_heroicfantasy/legend3.JPG

haaaa

cutty (mcutt), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:49 (seventeen years ago) link

on second thought, the best actor in that movie is BILLY FUCKIN BARTY

Shakey Mo Collier (Shakey Mo Collier), Friday, 30 December 2005 00:51 (seventeen years ago) link

his role in Magnolia was funny. in hindsight, it's like a self-parody of how he is now.

-- DR. O. RLY? (...), Today. (later)

He was great in Magnolia though, especially since his stock dynamo-asshole character was played for pathos.

-- elmo, patron saint of nausea (elmo.oxyge...), Today. (later)

Agreed with the latter, and I don't think it's fair to hold the hindsight self-parody against him, although it is true.

He's been in some great fucking movies and even played some amazing parts (although he often plays that tough-guy-with-a-soft-side character, but when it's good, it's really good). I actually liked him in Vanilla Sky, but I also liked that movie in general. Let me also mention "A Few Good Men."

regular roundups (Dave M), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:07 (seventeen years ago) link

He has an unsurpassed ability to project bright-eyed eagerness. He has a just-passable ability to brood, which usually threatens to tip over into mopery. I can't think of any other of his acting talents, offhand.

Aimless (Aimless), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:16 (seventeen years ago) link

he has an extremely ingenuous quality, in which the actor/character appears unusually open about whatever quality he embodies. i'm not sure if that means he's stupid or smart.

gabbneb (gabbneb), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:49 (seventeen years ago) link

Main Entry: 2ingenuous
Function: adjective
Etymology: Latin ingenuus native, free born, from in- + gignere to beget -- more at KIN
1 obsolete : NOBLE, HONORABLE
2 a : showing innocent or childlike simplicity and candidness b : lacking craft or subtlety
synonym see NATURAL
- in·gen·u·ous·ly adverb
- in·gen·u·ous·ness noun

born-again christians in the old corral (Jody Beth Rosen), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:51 (seventeen years ago) link

his paranoia is what makes his performances interesting.

jed_ (jed), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:54 (seventeen years ago) link

either 'candidness' or 'childlike simplicity' gets at it best, depending on how you feel about him. take, for instance, Tom Cruise being arrogant. his performance is simultaneously 1) his character being arrogant and 2) either his character admitting to arrogance or Tom Cruise admitting to his character's arrogance. is it genius acting (or even a meta thing?), or just what it looks like when Tom Cruise is acting after telling himself 8.37 billion times "OMG YOU ARE BEING SO ARROGANT RIGHT NOW, MAAAN"?

gabbneb (gabbneb), Friday, 30 December 2005 01:58 (seventeen years ago) link

in every movie he has a moment of realization where he'll touch his hand to his head and sway back and forth a little and his eyes will go wide and his mouth will open slightly and he'll say, "of course..." and chuckle slightly and continue, "why didn't i think of that before?"

gear (gear), Friday, 30 December 2005 02:01 (seventeen years ago) link

His boyish charm's worn off since Risky Business and he's not a very good actor - he has a few "looks" as someone said above, but they're the same in each film adn you begin to say to yourself: oh, there's the clutch your head and rock look" or the "look down and shake your head look". etc.
He was HOT in Top Gun but only in the "oh my god he's soooooo sexy" playing volleyball sans shirt and when he finally hops onto Kellie McGillis (kinda comical in that they're both said to be gay in real life) but wow! That was some kinda steamy acting; or I was just really young and thinking that he was a cute young studly guy? Either way, when I see him now it has a parody feel to it - he's just too odd and corny and looks kinda old now, so he's lost all appeal for me.

Wiggy (Wiggy), Friday, 30 December 2005 02:32 (seventeen years ago) link

Mission Impossible (first one only) is classic.

deej.. (deej..), Friday, 30 December 2005 02:35 (seventeen years ago) link

agreed, deej.

regular roundups (Dave M), Friday, 30 December 2005 05:09 (seventeen years ago) link

But is it classic for reasons having to do with Tom Cruise's acting talent, or for other reasons altogether?

Aimless (Aimless), Friday, 30 December 2005 05:11 (seventeen years ago) link

I was waiting for somebody to bring up Losin' It or Legend. We got to see Losin' It on HBO, until the titties showed up. Then Dad made us leave the room.

kingfish holiday travesty (kingfish 2.0), Friday, 30 December 2005 05:21 (seventeen years ago) link


xpost other reasons altogether obv. at his best his vacantness renders him transparent rather than annoying, and he becomes an adequate cog(protagonist x) I keep in my peripheral vision allowing me take in the rest of the entertainment more fully. He was actually "good" in Eyes Wide Shut though, and some others I'm sure. Even at his worst he hasn't ruined a movie for me, he would need a personality to do that.

tremendoid (tremendoid), Friday, 30 December 2005 05:27 (seventeen years ago) link

four years pass...

The Cruiser is so blase about dangerous situations:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7QfTYH2L2k

DavidM, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 12:35 (thirteen years ago) link

ktgurl10 (1 hour ago)
fuckkk yes MUSE MAKE THIS TRAILER WHAT IT IS

Who was that Christmas-jumpered man? (onimo), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 13:46 (thirteen years ago) link

Dud. To me, Cruise is a one-trick pony as an actor, and his efforts to stretch beyond his hyper-confident, man-of-action Alfa-Male image are mostly laughable (admittedly, I haven't seen Born On The 4th Of July, which I take it is his most significant attempt to break past the image).

Daniel, Esq., Wednesday, 30 December 2009 14:59 (thirteen years ago) link

He is funny in interviews tho tbh.

Daniel, Esq., Wednesday, 30 December 2009 15:00 (thirteen years ago) link

He works really well as a blank slate where the film projects a role onto him, but in recent years he's attempted to grow a personality so it doesn't work well.

mh, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 15:46 (thirteen years ago) link

works really well as a sociopath... not so much where caring or warmth is required

Snop Snitchin, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:07 (thirteen years ago) link

I think he is actually a good actor, and almost all of his films are worth watching. I think people are maybe prejudiced against his Scientological beliefs which I don't pay much attention to, he does a lot of films with intrigue, I mean COME ON he was in Eyes Wide Shut. Like are you going to have some boring indie method guy doing that? What do you people WANT? Jerry Maguire is good too.

US EEL (u s steel), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:28 (thirteen years ago) link

i usually just treat him/look at him like a special effect in a movie. he might as well be cgi. i liked him in war of the worlds though. he almost seemed human. would have probably loved that movie no matter who was in it though.

scott seward, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:44 (thirteen years ago) link

That trailer looks pretty cool actually. The part where he is hanging on the car in sunglasses akin to risky business cruise. The part where he falls off the car. The lolz when he walks into the diner as Diaz is telling her story to the unbeliever.

Spiffy Spaceman (CaptainLorax), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:50 (thirteen years ago) link

The only part of that trailer I hated was RILEY FINN.

ô_o (Nicole), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:51 (thirteen years ago) link

I liked that trailer a lot too.

krakow, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:57 (thirteen years ago) link

I would probably watch this movie, it does look like fun (except for Riley, argh).

ô_o (Nicole), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 16:58 (thirteen years ago) link

Tom Cruise can do determination, passion etc. really well, but sometimes things get funny when he tries to pull off affection and the lighter moments in a relationship.

Cunga, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 18:11 (thirteen years ago) link

He's good in Collateral.

Communi-Bear Silo State (chap), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 18:13 (thirteen years ago) link

wow gabbneb on this thread is just... urgh blech

larry craig memorial gloryhole (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 18:38 (thirteen years ago) link

My brother recently told me that Christian Bale based his American Psycho character on Cruise after seeing him on Letterman one night

and here it is: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/10/22/christian-bales-american_n_329874.html

Cunga, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 18:48 (thirteen years ago) link

To be honest I don't want to see him in the "lighter moments in a relationship". He is a Scientologist.

US EEL (u s steel), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 21:09 (thirteen years ago) link

Boy it must have been a real chore for Christian Bale to find a role model to base the crazy on.

Snake Effect Low (Pancakes Hackman), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 21:20 (thirteen years ago) link

name me an 'average man' Tom Cruise has played

― gabbneb (gabbneb), Thursday, December 29, 2005 7:40 PM

war of the worlds

♖♘♗♔♕♗♘♖ (am0n), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 21:21 (thirteen years ago) link

He was actually really funny in Tropic Thunder, although I didn't realise it was him till the end credits.

Ork Alarm (Matt #2), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 21:29 (thirteen years ago) link

He is excellent in Magnolia and Tropic Thunder

He was v good in Risky Business IIRC

everything else he's ever done can be balled up into one soggy wad and fired into the sun imo

Audrey Wetherspoons (sic), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 22:44 (thirteen years ago) link

tbh ive like like 80-90% of the movies hes been in so i cant hate the dude that much

max, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 22:48 (thirteen years ago) link

*liked

max, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 22:48 (thirteen years ago) link

like hes probably a creep in real life but hes got pretty good taste in projects, better than a lot of actors who seem like theyd be cool to hang out with in real life

max, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 22:49 (thirteen years ago) link

He is excellent in Magnolia and Tropic Thunder

Fair enough, but he was bascially playing himself or the phone-in version he now uses. Not bad, excellently cast, but hardly a stretch, acting-wise.

Enfonce bien tes ongles et tes doigts délicats dans la jungle de (Michael White), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 22:51 (thirteen years ago) link

When I say "lighter moments" I mean, for example, there are scenes in his movies where his son will say something like "thanks for taking me to the park, Dad!" and Tom Cruise will look at kid with the most intense, passionate look a man can make, force that weird Cruise laugh, and then in that solemn voice of his say: "I love you so much."

A simple "no problem, sport" response to his son would've worked, but no.

Cunga, Wednesday, 30 December 2009 23:06 (thirteen years ago) link

he can't help it, he's fucking passionate man

larry craig memorial gloryhole (Shakey Mo Collier), Wednesday, 30 December 2009 23:32 (thirteen years ago) link

I remember thinking how great he was in Magnolia.

krakow, Thursday, 31 December 2009 00:07 (thirteen years ago) link

He was good in Minority Report as well.

ô_o (Nicole), Thursday, 31 December 2009 00:27 (thirteen years ago) link

thirteen years pass...

Weird question: does anyone know where exactly "American Pie" is used in Born on the Fourth of July? It'll save me watching the whole film again.

Also: has their never been a Tom Cruise poll on ILX?

clemenza, Monday, 23 January 2023 17:47 (one week ago) link

there was this one:

THOMAS CRUISE MAPOTHER IV: HIS ŒUVRE

omar little, Monday, 23 January 2023 17:52 (one week ago) link

Ah, that's why I couldn't find it.

clemenza, Monday, 23 January 2023 17:54 (one week ago) link


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