They say a movie is only as good as the sum of all its parts, and it is a difficult concept to argue with. It is especially tough to argue when one of its parts appears to be so much shinier and nicer than the rest.
Some would argue that a particularly great performance or global superstar can save a film but the evidence rarely seems to back up this theory, and there is often nothing more disheartening than seeing a brilliant performance or usually stellar actor underused in a film or over-shadowed by the myriad of mistakes splashed all over the rest of the production.
Actors can inarguably elevate a production with an impressive performance but what happens when they are either not given a good enough platform for that performance? Or when they're not even given the screen-time to try?
There is countless examples of actors who have been inexplicably attached to films beneath their talents or of actors simply under-appreciated by the directors or editors who find themselves a footnote in the wider scheme of the film. It is a sad truth that depressingly continues in film to this day.
Here are some of the most recent, and egregious, examples of actors being absolutely wasted in films.
10. James McEvoy - Glass
2016's Split was one of the surprise hits of the last decade. After a terrifyingly long time spent in the film-making doldrums, M. Night Shyamalan finally returned to some semblance of form with the horror-tinged thriller. The film was lauded largely thanks to a striking performance from endearing Scot, James McAvoy.
Therefore it came as no surprise when the film was followed up a few years later with the final entry in the surprise comic-themed trilogy, Glass. However the film was, in a twist everyone should have seen coming based off recent history, a dire effort to follow up the fantastic Split. McAvoy's return alone should have made the film worth watching, and he certainly does his best but he's absolutely wasted among a movie that just didn't seem to know what it wanted to be.
Glass does not follow the psychological-thriller vibe that made Split such a hit, but instead went for a needless and deeply unentertaining all-action approach. It's a poor finale to a pretty decent trilogy up until that point and an absolute waste of both McAvoy's fantastic talents and all 24 of his fantastic personalities we came to know in Split.