Examine two of the films in Module #5 and write an essay focused on the following question: What are the differences in acting styles between two actors? The films in this section offer complex plots and fine-grained characterizations by actors who have different backgrounds and training. This module introduced method acting and the success of the method actor often depends upon realism in the story, dialog, details, motivation and the arc of the character. Here are some possibilities:
1. You may base part of your essay on the method actor you covered in your M5 Discussion or you may select another method actor from a different film. Then you must compare the method actor to another actor in a different film who is not known as a method actor.
2. You might compare a classically trained British stage actor and an American “method” actor, or a French actor and an American “method” actor, or an Indian actor to a classically trained British stage actor. There are many other permutations and combinations but one of your actors should be method except in the rare case that you compare an International actor with a non-method British actor.
3. You could compare two actors playing the same part (e.g. John Wayne and Jeff Bridges in True Grit or Sissy Spacek and Chloe Grace Moretz in Carrie or Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert Redford in The Great Gatsby). Students have expanded this to include films like The Italian Job (Michael Caine and Mark Wahlberg) and Ocean’s Eleven (Frank Sinatra and George Clooney). These do not have to be method actors but two different actors playing the same part in two films.
4. There are so many articles comparing Jack Nicholson’s Joker in 1989’s Batman directed by Tim Burton with Heath Ledger’s performance in The Dark Knight (2008) directed by Christopher Nolan that we will limit the grade to a maximum of 89% for anyone who chooses that comparison. While we’re on the subject of superhero movies, please refrain from comparing actors in Spider-Man or any other films based upon Marvel or DC Comics. Many actors resist the temptation for big money because these films do not provide an opportunity for important or meaningful acting performances. The same rules apply. You cannot receive an A if you choose any of these films as your option.