Hey, Jude -- you are hot

He's tan, toothy and, for at least one viewer, by far the biggest talent in 'Mr. Ripley." And did we mention how hot he is


January 09, 2000|By Tamara Ikenberg | Tamara Ikenberg,SUN STAFF

Oooh, Matt Damon just got a Golden Globe nomination for his performance in "The Talented Mr. Ripley."

Yay, Matt! So proud of you. And you did it all without the help of your very good friend Ben Affleck.

The real talent in this film, however, is Jude Law, a fine, and I mean fine, British actor who will finally get the recognition in this country he deserves.

I am not a big-screen groupie. Pretty movie boys usually do nothing for me. Tom Cruise is short. Mel Gibson is hairy. James Van Der Beek is a girl.

Yet, after seeing "Mr. Ripley," I freely allow Jude into my heart. His powers are awesome. When I think of Jude, when I see Jude, I get weak. Sometimes lose ability to use pronouns and adverbs. Forget who am. Write stupid.

Jude has moved me to write not a review, not a love letter, but a testimonial from my inner teeny-bopper: "The Talented Mr. Ripley" is the story of a toothy, insecure con artist who gets paid by some old guy to go to Italy. Once in Italy, he covets the lush life of a toothy debutante and her less toothy but nonetheless hot hot hot cad of a boyfriend (who is disturbingly named Dickie).

So "The Talented Mr. Ripley" is a movie everyone can identify with. Not.

Tom Ripley (Damon) is a wacko freakazoid. Marge (Gwyneth Paltrow) and Dickie (Jude Law -- hotter than all the Backstreet Boys in a sauna) are sun-kissed aristocrats with a penchant for jazz, sailboat sex and seducing lusty Italian natives. They have not a care in the world, wear great clothes and live, as the movie presents it, in the most beautiful place on Earth.

Then Tom Ripley enters this very pretty picture and starts using their stuff and acting scary. OK. That's basically what happens. Now, best and worst parts of this movie:

Best part of movie: Jude Law's tush.

Runner-up: Jude Law's face.

Honorable mention: Jude Law's tan.

Worst part of movie: Jude Law dies.

Runner-up: Everything after that. Oh, yeah, there are some non-Jude-related things in this movie.

This movie is about identity and wanting to be someone you're not. This, of course, is very deep stuff and territory that has never ever been explored in film or literature before.

Only person in movie who does not want to be someone else is Jude. Makes sense. But non-Jude people all do impressions.

Tom Ripley does eerily good impression of Dickie's dad. Cate Blanchett does eerily good impression of my hairdresser from Chicago. Gwyneth Paltrow does eerily good impression of Gwyneth Paltrow.

Jude does eerily good impression of Adonis, without even trying. Wait, even Adonis was not that good-looking. If he was, I want to see a naughty picture. Now.

More on non-Jude people:

Pasty Matt Damon in fluorescent green swim trunks. Ugh!

No one is in love with Gwyneth Paltrow. Yeah! Need to be more movies like that.

Gwyneth's pillbox leopard-print hat is nice, though. Nice clothes, too, honey, especially that pink bikini. Too bad the only male attention you got during the entire movie was a brief -- but blissful, I'm sure! -- tryst with Jude in a sailboat cabin. And he only did that to make mad Matt jealous. (This movie was the only time in the world I felt anything resembling a connection to the emaciated Ms. Paltrow. Why? She hung out with a lot of gay guys and no straight boys liked her. Only difference is, for her, that only happens in movies.)

I will give dumb Matt Damon credit for doing a movie without Ben Affleck. Wonder if Gwyneth talked about him the whole time. Wonder if Matt got jealous.

Matt Damon is not even hot in this film. He was kind of hot in "Good Will Hunting" and "Saving Private Ryan." What happened?

He lost, like, 20 pounds, I heard. But if it's only a 20-pound difference between so hot and so very not, then he wasn't hot to begin with. And I for one, feel deceived.

Note to self: Buy cheap bottle of wine, rent every Jude Law film ever made, unplug phone. Wait, don't unplug phone: Jude might call! Oh, just remembered other best part of movie: Jude Law in bathtub.

Should not have expected more from Anthony Minghella, director of "The English Patient." All I could think during that endless purgatory of a movie was: More Ralph Fiennes in leather jacket. Less burnt Ralph Fiennes.

Recommendations for improving "Mr. Ripley":

Completely recast with Jude Law (or people who look just like him) in all roles.

Rename movie "The Undeniably Hot Mr. Law."

I know talent when I see it. Especially when I see it ignoring Gwyneth Paltrow.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.