Saturday, April 4, 2015

50 Reasons why Robert Downey Jr. is Awesome

Surely, I won't be in alone in this, but speaking as one of this man's biggest fans, it's something I can't not do.

It feels like just yesterday when RDJ was 45 (going on 46) and "Less than Zero" kinda changed my life... when I went from being a huge fan to attaining fangirl status.

Today, he's turning FIFTY.

So why not be totally cliché and list 50 amazing things about him?
And I will do my best to be original... not just focusing on the physical things, but going for the deep stuff. What sets him apart for me as someone generally crazy about actors, but also what makes him an amazing person.

Believe it or not, coming up with 50 things wasn't easy, but I managed.

1) He gets better with age... not just his good looks, but his acting has even improved.

2) His wife, Susan Downey, is his secret weapon. An amazing movie producer and partner.

3) He can make a bad movie worth watching until the end... because he makes you care about what's going to happen to him.

- "Less than Zero" looked like it was going to be one of those John Hughes type 80's movies... after we got to know the characters and such, the plot stalled for a bit and the focus shifted to numerous scenes involving Andrew McCarthy and Jami Gertz messing around. If not for Julian, I wouldn't have stuck around for the ending.
...incidentally, I stuck it out through the credits because I was still getting over the shock of it.

-even with him involved, I still didn't think "U.S. Marshalls," "Air America" or "Bowfinger" were great movies... and in the case of "Wonder Boys," he was the one character in the movie I didn't like... oddly enough

4) When he gets a role, he really does his homework

-while Richard Attenborough searched for a studio to host "Chaplin," Robert went to "every autobiographical source" and spent 18 months in research mode

5) When he auditions for a role he really wants, he aims to nail the screen test to the point where it's virtually impossible to cast anyone else

-see "Iron-Man"

6) He has an AMAZING singing voice

7) He's one of the few actors who'd released an album of well-written ORIGINAL material 
[part 1 of 4 of my discussion of his album]

8) He'd had that sass from a very young age

-in his father's film, "Pound," where the actors played dogs, he asked a Mexican hairless, "Got any hair on your balls?"

9) He has great instincts for pickings movies (those that went on to be successful and indie films that he made better by being a part of)

-regarding the latter, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Fur, A Guide to Recognizing Your Saints, Charlie Barlett10. He's great with accents

-except he twice asked to change his character's accent from Irish to Australian ("Natural Born Killers" and "Tropic Thunder")... so maybe not he's great with ALL accents just yet

11. He's a great piano player

-a great example of this is at the end of "Two Girls & a Guy" where he gives a very poignant emotional performance without speaking a single word- another original composition

12. I find him just as compelling to listen to off-camera

13. He's gotten great actors on board for his movies

-Jamie Foxx in "Due Date" and Mark Ruffalo in "Avengers" are two stand-out examples

14. He survived addiction, accepted its many consequences, and has since left it in rearview

-out of respect, this is the only time I'll bring up his troubled past... even if it contributed to the endless wisdom he spouts in his more in-depth interviews

15. He's made ordinary roles extraordinary

-Larry Paul on "Ally McBeal" is a prime example of this

16. In "Fur," he conveyed so much emotion and mystique as Lionel, a man who suffers from hypertrichosis, that when his true face was revealed, the mystique actually disappeared

17. He's a practitioner of Wing Chun Kung Fu and has expressed interest in opening his own studio

18. When it comes to Susan, he doesn't fear the occasional PDA ;)

19. He's great with improv in his movies

-he once joked that he thought he was already writing for movies already and just hadn't been credited

20. He is Iron-Man