Nicholas Cage plays a hyper version of himself, Nick Cage, in Tom Gormican’s hugely entertaining and laugh-filed action-comedy, The Unbearable Weight of Immense Talent.
Nick Cage is haunted by a version of himself that pushes him to be a movie star, not a constantly working actor. His daughter, Addy (Lily Mo Sheen), wants to be her own person, not a mini-Cage, and his relationship with Olivia (Sharon Horgan), his wife, is strained.
And his agent Fink (Neil Patrick Harris), just told him he didn’t get a part he wanted. But does have another offer for him, a birthday party for a superfan, Javi (Pedro Pascal) in Mallorca, Spain.
Unfortunately, the U.S. government is watching Javi with agent Vivian (Tiffany Haddish), because they believe he is a high-profile villain who has kidnapped a young girl to keep a political party in check. Cage’s refined acting instincts tell him different as the pair forge an unlikely friendship based on the shared love of film and Cage’s classic performances.
Cage leans into his performance delightfully, and he and Pascal are a great on-screen pairing, Javi loves everything about Cage that Cage’s fan do, the overtop performances, the iconic films, the acting choices.
The film’s plot intentionally echoes the script that the pair begin to work on lending it a meta factor that makes this movie insanely fun. There are references to countless Cage films, good and bad, and the fact that Cage himself seems to be having the time of his life poking fun, and enjoying playing a heightened version of himself.
There’s a sense of joy that permeates the film that when we move towards the third act and there’s some tension between the main characters it really bothers you because you want these two to get along. It’s a wonderful little bromance the pair are having.
Pascal, as always, is not only a damned reliable actor but a damned likable one as well.
Gormican who wrote the script with Kevin Etten keeps things moving along at a rapid-fire pace, filled with great dialogue (a lot of which nods to other Cage films) and action beats that play against type, skewering Cage’s 90s work as an action hero.
There are some great moments, wonderful reveals, pleasant twists, and a whole meta thing going on with Cage playing himself and skewering Hollywood, fandom, and more. There’s a lot happening here, and it’s definitely a film that can be enjoyed repeatedly, for the chemistry between the two leads alone.
I loved this one!