Winning The Lottery With Nicolas Cage #63
My name is Ed, or at least it used to be until I started watching Nicolas Cage films in an attempt to win the National Lottery. Since then I’ve lost my job, the country voted Brexit, and the Rock and Vin Diesel have fallen out. There are no more certainties.
Trespass is a film about some people who trespass on Nic Cage’s property. I don’t know why it’s called trespass as it’s not like they’re from an anarchic wing of the Rambler’s Association, they also kidnap him and his family and threaten to murder them because they want to steal all his money. It would be more accurate to call this film ‘Guns and Shouting’.
So, right, Nic Cage is an (apparently) absolutely minted diamond dealer who is having MARITAL PROBLEMS causing him not to want to do A SEX on his wife, Nicole Kidman (a stunning performance as ‘very bored actress with a regret’). Meanwhile, their TROUBLESOME TEEN just wants to go to PARTIES. Very RELATABLE. Then a GANG turns up with GUNS and starts SHOUTING. I’ll stop DOING this GIMMICK now.
Anyway, the gang’s plan immediately unravels as a) Nic Cage is a lot less enthusiastic about opening up his safe and giving them all his money than they expected and b) the gang is almost as dysfunctional as the family. “It’s sort of like a cracked mirror, yeah?” says the screenwriter, breathing bits of crisp into your face. One of the trespassers is on TOO MANY drugs! One of the trespassers is on NOT ENOUGH drugs! And NOTHING is as it SEEMS. Okay, I’ll really stop now.
The problem is that there’s nothing here but twist after melodramatic twist. He’s doing that because he thinks she did this. But really she did this because that other guy did that. And he only did that because his cat did, and so on. The closest thing to a saving grace Trespass has is that at a certain point it becomes so convoluted as to be outright laughable. ‘Because everyone lies, right man?’ says the screenwriter, waving an unlit cigarette in your face. But needing an organisational chart to follow the plot of a film is not, as it turns out, a good thing. It’s not even actually that complicated, it’s that each individual part is so dull it’s hard to keep in your head.
Cage seems mainly interested in trying out different ways of doing ‘acting in glasses’ (also ‘acting when you cannot see because you’ve dropped your glasses’). It is not one of his best performances, sticking almost entirely in the mode of strained anger, and at times he appears to be genuinely furious that he’s in the film at all. When, towards the end, he tells Nicole Kidman to let him die so she and the kid get the life insurance, you sort of feel a bit sad that she refuses.
There really is a lot of shouting in it.
3 — There was a delay in production when on August 3rd 2010, Nic Cage allegedly started demanding that he be allowed to switch roles to play the head trespasser, before departing the project entirely to go on holiday. Unfortunately, he returned, and filming resumed.
4 — At the beginning of the film Nic Cage is making a deal involving 4 carat diamonds. A carat is apparently 200 milligrams so why not just say that? Is it because of Big Diamond, who will force me to spend all my lottery money on diamonds for my stupid fictional wife.
10 — The one kidnapper sold out the other one for 10 thousand dollars. I can understand. I would like 10 thousand dollars.
18 — Trespass broke the ‘time from cinema to home video record’, making it to DVD in just 18 days. This knocked the ‘excellent’ American Idol spin-off movie From Justin To Kelly, which had taken a whole 29 days, off the top spot.
24 — Trespass had a total domestic gross of $24,094. On a $35 million budget. Bazinga.
54 — The number plate on Nic Cage’s car is JSG854. I genuinely get a nervous reaction (‘got to write it down, got to write it down’) when I see a number plate in any film or TV show now because of this whole stupid idea.
Zero return on a £2 investment. Still, at least I didn’t lose millions of quid making this crappy film.
NEXT TIME ON NICOLAS CAGE:
Seeking Justice or possibly just Justice depending on what country you watch it in.
Apparently Medium makes it quite hard to find previous instalments of this so I have made a sort of index thing, here.
Do not spend your money on lottery tickets because you think watching Nicolas Cage films will enable you to win the lottery. The only real winner in the lottery is the lottery, bad artists, and people who actually win the lottery.