The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent
15 | ★★☆☆☆
Legendary actor Nicolas Cage sends himself off in a spectacular fashion by starring as a fictional version of himself in this absurdist comedy from writer-director Tom Gormican. Co-written by Gormican in collaboration with screenwriter Kevin Etten, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent also stars Jewish comedian Tiffany Haddish, British actor-writer Sharon Horgan (Catastrophe) and Chilean-born star Pedro Pascal (Game of Thrones, The Mandalorian).
Creatively unfulfilled and strapped for cash, actor Nicolas Cage (Cage) accepts a $1 million offer to attend the lavish birthday of powerful cartel boss and Cage superfan Javi Gutierrez (Pascal) at his home in Spain. Things take a surreal turn when the actor is recruited by CIA operative Vivian (Tiffany Haddish) to help free the daughter of a politician kidnapped by Javi’s men.
As Cage and Javi grow closer every day, the former starts to wonder whether his host is really the dangerous criminal he is being made out to be. Things come to a head when Nick’s wife (Horgan) and daughter (Lily Sheen) are flown to Spain by Javi in the hope they might help get his creative juices flowing.
As ingenious as it is, for a high concept premise to work, there really needs to be more than the initial hook to keep the story flowing. Sadly, instead this is a film that feels tediously pleased with itself and is deeply unfunny. While it’s no secret that Cage himself has been the butt of every overcooked internet meme over the last two decades let’s not forget that he is a hugely talented actor with some brilliant roles under his belt.
Everyone seems to be having a whale of time here, including Cage but too often the film feels desperate for cult status. We have will instead a series of cheap jokes held together wIth an utterly ridiculous storyline. And while some of Cage’s many fans will applaud his ability to laugh at himself, those of us who had high hopes after his starring role in the brilliant revenge tale Pig, will be disappointed to see such a great talent go to waste.