Michael Keaton: magic man

When you watch Michael Keaton on screen, there’s more than a little magic on display.

Birdman_Michael KeatonI recently highlighted the new film with the superb Michael Keaton in my post Watch this Birdman fly and that could soon be a prophetic statement if he walks away with the ‘Best Actor’ Oscar in March as he’s currently the frontrunner for the award. But right now with the critical acclaim he’s received for Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s film Birdman, it feels a good moment to celebrate this actor whose incredible inventiveness has always made me think of what he brings to the characters we’ve seen him play is magic.

Keaton has always been an actor I’ve admired a lot for that real lightness of touch that he seems to display in all of his movies making it all look so effortless, whether it’s broad comedy or serious drama, whatever the role. His recent performances in such diverse fare as the remake of Robocop and the wacky comedy The Other Guys have been great but in more of a supporting capacity, which is why it’s so great to see him back on the screen in a leading role in Birdman.

Desperate MeasuresMost of his key performances in his career to date are mentioned in the interview in The Guardian below – the landmark Batman with Tim Burton and before that a certain demonic Beetlejuice, the by-the-book FBI agent in the pair of Tarantino films Jackie Brown and Out of Sight, his terrific stay-at-home Dad in the comedy Mr Mom and his absolutely terrifying tenant in Pacific Heights – but I also adored his glorious double-edged killer opposite the great Andy Garcia in Barbet Schroeder’s thriller Desperate Measures, his hilarious voicing of Ken in Toy Story 3 and his harassed editor up against the story of his career in Ron Howard’s ensemble drama The Paper.

And now he’s a leading man again and he talks about how much he’s enjoyed being able to do such varied work in his career “experimenting here, trying at this, failing at that, being good in some things, not so good in others. It’s kind of amazing…” All I can say is long may it continue!

Michael Keaton – Oscar bound?

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