Monday, 12 September 2011

Best Supporting Actor 2001: Ben Kingsley in Sexy Beast

Ben Kingsley received his third Oscar nomination for portraying Don Logan in Sexy Beast.

Sexy Beast details the story of a retired criminal Gal (Ray Winstone) resistance against a criminal associate's want for him to return to London for one more job.

Ben Kingsley portrays the thug who wants Gal to take another job, and is quite reluctant to take no for an answer. This a far cry from his Oscar winning performance as Gandhi, and because of that this performance is quite interesting to watch, although that does not completely mean this is a great performance either, but certainly one that is quite intriguing to compare to his earlier performance.

I might as well start with the negative qualities I see in the performance. Kingsley in a few moment, short and small moments most certainly, but moments nonetheless he shows what I see as a bit of visible acting unfortuantely. These moments are few and far in between, and they mostly come from some of his physical mannerisms in his performance, such as the first scene where he is sitting with Gal, and his friends Kingsley overdoes the stiff intensity just a bit, making it seem a little unnatural.

Forgetting those moments though this certainly is still a good performance. Kingsley uses the perfect cockney accent in the role, that properly exemplifies the crudeness, and the cruelty of the character. As Don Kingsley seems always off balance, and frankly seem a bit of a rabid dog, particularly in the way he repeats yes. There is something always clearly wrong with him, and Kingsley realizes the threatening unnerving of Don very well.

Kingsley stays on this note for most of his performance, as he should since Don is really a one note sort of man. Kingsley lets on a little more about Don's love for one of Gal's friends, but Kingsley stresses very little showing that Don sort of is unable to show any true affection due to who he is. Kingsley does manage to add this layer to Don's personality without overriding the rest of his characterization, or making his affection seem unnatural for Don.

In the end to me this is a good performance but not a great one. It is an entertaining, funny at times, as well as effective villainous performance, but not quite a truly unforgettable performance. Kingsley though still gives a fairly memorable one, despite only a few very minor flaws in his performance. I never quite saw him as an amazing villain, but still a good one.

4 comments:

Sage Slowdive said...

I agree - I didn't quite get the hype of it.

dshultz said...

Would you recommend this film to me?

Louis Morgan said...

Yes, not a great film, but I would say it is worth watching.

houndtang said...

I thought he was impressive - if the same actor can play both Gandhi and Don Logan then he's clearly got a lot of talent