Catching Up With...Brendan Fraser
We watch five films we've never seen before from legendary actor Brendan Fraser
The Brenaissance is well and truly alive! With the release of The Whale gaining actor Brendan Fraser countless award nominations, fans of the beloved 90's star are thrilled to have him on their screens again.
Brendan had a tough time getting his break in Hollywood. It wasn't until his appearance in Disney's George of the Jungle that he became a household name; and shortly after that came The Mummy films, which saw the actor play legendary adventure hero Rick O'Connell. Beyond these appearances though Brendan starred in many box-office bombs, and although some of them have become cult classics over time (see Looney Tunes: Back in Action), for some reason the studios lost faith in the actor's ability.
A few things are written to have lead to Brendan Fraser stepping back from the limelight. The actor himself believes that his career plummeted when he revealed he was sexually assaulted by a Hollywood executive. He also stopped meeting the demands that blockbusters wanted him to (a.k.a being thrown about for stunts or being covered in portaloo produce). Can you blame the guy?
In 2016 Fraser began to make some TV appearances again in shows like Doom Patrol and the anthology series Trust, and it's here that publications began to use the word: Brenaissance. Brendan went on to be cast in Steven Soderbergh's No Sudden Move, and shortly after was cast in Martin Scorsese's Killers of the Flowers Moon (set for release this year) and of course The Whale. It's doesn't take a genius then to understand why everyone in the world wants the greatest success for this man that has remained humble, and remained dedicated to his work. In this blog I've watched five films I'd never seen before starring the actor, and then rank his greatest film. He's wholesome, he's genuine, he's respectful and he's a terrific actor. A real legend!
Actor: Brendan Fraser
Breakout Film: Dogfight
Feature Film Credits: 49 (check below to see where he ranks amongst other actors)
Academy Award Nominations: 1
FILM 1 - George of the Jungle
The fact that this makes you sit through that awful animated intro is a crime...but then the rest of it starts. The narration is hilarious as we watch a loveable George fall in love. You have to admire Fraser's dedication to the role. It's wacky style may take a bit of getting used to but in the end its a fun family caper. ★★★
FILM 2 - No Sudden Move
Now TV / Sky Cinema
What an exceptional cast! This is one of the most recent Brendan Fraser appearances. It's shot with a wide angle lens which is honestly just distracting as it distorts the edges of every frame. Casts this big very rarely work anymore. It's almost like too much star power makes it unrealistic and less dynamic. Brendan Fraser isn't actually in this much but when he is he's note perfect as ever. ★★
FILM 3 - Bedazzled
What a bizarre film! Brendan Fraser is so dorky in this. It's a testament to his ability when in The Mummy he can be so cool yet in this he's saying things like "I think someone's had tee many martooni's". With racist stereotypes, misogyny and some other dated concepts, this has aged pretty poorly, and it only came out in 2000. I've listened to Brendan Fraser talk about this film, and he's so passionate about the character. No matter what the work is he tackles it with respect and confidence and that's what makes him so great. Brendan Fraser is an excellent comic actor, and he makes this film so much more watchable than it would be without him. ★★★
FILM 4 - Hairbrained
Amazon Prime Video
Brendan Fraser has a childlike energy in this film. There's a few older characters who are inappropriate or just creepy towards the 13-year old lead, but its the comfort from Fraser's character that gives the film any heart. The messages feel all over the place and it's never that entertaining. ★★
FILM 5 - The Whale
Fraser is outstanding in this film. He plays Charlie, an incredibly overweight English lecturer who is close to the end of his life. The film is play-like and so are the performances, with passion leaking from every orifice. This will definitely be the film to gain Brendan Fraser the respect he deserves, lets just hope that Hollywood can value that talent and give him the roles he should be given. ★★★★
You may be shocked to see Looney Tunes: Back in Action on the Top 5 there, but I think it's great fun and I'll hear no different. I truly hope that his most recent appearances lead to more great things, and Im almost 100% sure that we'll have a The Mummy 4 announcement in the next 12 months, but so far we haven't seen all that this terrific actor can do, and I can't wait to see where he goes next.
The Whale in select cinemas now
Legend Status (based on feature film appearances):
Nicolas Cage - 105
Sigourney Weaver - 65
Al Pacino - 52
Sandra Bullock - 50
Brendan Fraser - 49
Bradley Cooper - 46