A movie is a some of its parts and even in the most brilliantly crafted of films, sometimes all those parts don’t function quite as well as they probably ought to. Some not-so-great elements can be easily overlooked or forgiven: one badly-lit scene, for example, probably won’t irk most moviegoers too much.
But you can't ignore some of the missteps. A lacklustre performance from a cast member can stick out like a sore thumb and perhaps even more so when the rest of the film surpasses our expectations. It's like your typical bad apple poisoning the basket sort of deal.
In some respects, the subpar performances can’t just be blamed entirely on the actor in question - performance isn't just about delivery, after all. Sometimes, they’re working with bad dialogue and poorly or underwritten characters. Nevertheless, it’s not like actors in Hollywood productions aren’t getting paid a pretty penny for their troubles so it’s not unreasonable to expect them to, you know, act.
So, to the actors that gave us off-puttingly OTT performance or bland and boring characters in 2017: please try harder next time.
10. Dane DeHaan – Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets got a lot of
hate in 2017, but we’re here to put the naysayers right – Luc Besson’s surreal
space opera was miles better than most would have you think. It actually has a
lot of things going for it: it’s visually stunning, it’s fun in a pulpy kind of
way and it’s a quintessentially Luc Besson movie.
Dane DeHaan’s performance as Major Valerian, however, is not one of those things. We assume he’s attempting to channel the ‘lovable rogue with a heart of gold’ vibe of characters like Han Solo but whereas Harrison Ford had the charisma and presence to pull that off, DeHaan unfortunately does not. Instead of a swaggering, braggadocious anti-hero he comes off more as an angsty teenager.
Maybe it’s because DeHaan is used to being the darling of the indie movie scene and feels more at home in the kind of dramatic roles that brings because in this big budget would-be blockbuster, it seems his heart just isn’t in it.