Thank You, Thank You Very Much
Imagine my surprise when I actually really enjoyed the movie, even if the story of Elvis has been told more time than I can count. The movie worked because of excellent casting. Randy Quaid played Colonel Tom Parker, Elvis's long time manager and control freak extraordinaire. I've always liked Randy Quaid, especially as the goofy cousin in those wonderful National Lampoon's movies, but I think this is the first time I actually saw Quaid you know, act.
Another excellent choice was Camryn Manheim as Elvis's mother. This is another actress I've never been a particularly big fan of, but the again, I never watched The Practice so I haven't really seen her in anything before to really make a call. These two casting decisions alone almost let me overlook the God awful decision to put Rose McGowan in as the sexy sixities siren, Ann-Margaret. Almost.
But the biggest shout out of all goes to Jonathan Rhys Meyers as The King himself. I don't know if you even know who Meyers is and if you do which version of him you know. For instance, if you've ever seen Bend It Like Beckham you've seen Meyers. Only problem is you wouldn't know THAT Meyers and this Meyers are indeed the same lad because yes, he is just. that. good. I predict big things for this boy and if I were you, I'd listen to me. I've been known to make good predictions.
I don't know what it is, but I enjoy an actor or actress that really plays a well know person well. For instance, I hear Jamie Foxx's job as Ray Charles in Ray was good and that master impressionist Kevin Spacey held his own as Bobby Darin in Beyond the Sea, although the movie wasn't quite as lucky. I thought Will Smith's Ali was convincing, however boring the movie might've been. The incomprable Judy Davis, another great, underrated actress was superb as Judy Garland. And then there's Gary Busey, who buck teethed his way through The Buddy Holly Story like nobody's business, among countless others I'll be kicking myself after reading the comments for not mentioning them here.
Then there are the movies that never were. They've been talking for years about making a movie out of Janis Joplin's life. Way back in the beginning, the great actress Lili Taylor was chosen (an excellent choice I might add) for the lead. Years went by and the movie was never made. Then they had Melissa Etheridge in the role at one point, who would have been an excellent choice vocally, but I never saw her act. Following that they chose the emaciated, but talented Brittany Murphy who I also could stand behind considering she's actually an excellent vocalist, though few people know this about her.
Instead the on again/off again project is apparently on again due and now the movie even has a title Piece of My Heart, starring Renee "look for me in every movie made from 2000-2023" Zellwegger. And to think, I once felt sorry for the poor little blonde actress from Empire Records and Jerry Maguire that no one paid attention to. Ha.
I say they should just pull an Amy Fisher. Remember back in the early 90's when Joey Buttafuoco and company were all the rage? Not one, not two, but three movies were made about this event. About AMY FISHER! Meanwhile, Janis is still waiting for her one decent script to come her way. Poor, poor Janis. See dying young can have its disadvantages after all. Just ask other deceased stars who are still on the "make a movie about me" waiting list like James Dean, Del Shannon or even Irene Cara, who kinda counts.
So I say, start hedging your bets now. Remember, a story of Britney and Kevin: The Way We Were, can't be cast too soon.