Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Happy Birthday Ewan McGregor

They're subtle, these charms of his, or at least they were. He was amazing in Trainspotting, of course, but at the time it came out he didn't make much of an impression on me. I do remember thinking, 'Why would they use a real junkie?' Of course, he was just... ACTING!

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketHe more than compensated for Jar-Jar Binks in The Phantom Menace, though, turning his Alec Guinness impression into the most gracious homage when it could have so easily been the same kind of grotesque Stepin Fetchit-esque burlesque his animated costar was.

But when McGregor opened his mouth to sing in Moulin Rouge...? I can't remember a moment in cinema for five years that electrified me like that, mainly, I guess, because I hadn't been prepared for it. Come What May indeed; by the time he'd finished singing it there wasn't a dry seat in the house.

Since I originally posted this two years ago today (!) I've also had the chance to see him in Down With Love, co-starring David Hyde Pierce and Squinty Fatface-McBonerack; as an homage to Sixties sex comedies of the Rock-and-Doris variety it was pretty good, but for all the time they took on costume, set design, and hair they got the lighting wrong. It was too dark to evoke the Technicolor gaudiness of the era, and since it didn't show Ewan bathed in the same golden light as my admiration for him it wasn't as good as it could have been.

Still, given the choices he makes, I have a feeling the Pop Culture Institute will be celebrating Ewan McGregor's birthday for many years, come what may...
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1 comment:

Y | O | Y said...

Loved him in Moulin Rouge. Star Wars? Not so much. But that was cause the entire second (or is that first?) trilogy was such a green-screen orgy of unbelievable CGI. They were such a total mess I really can't hold it against any of the actors.

Signed,

A Fan of the first (or is that second?) Trilogy