If you asked a random group of people who enjoy watching movies who the worst actor in Hollywood is, I’d bet that at least a few of them would mention Brendan Fraser. If you asked that same group of people which prominent actor they thought made the worst movies, I’d bet that even more of them would have that same response. But still, despite Furry Vengeance and Inkheart and Monkeybone and Dudley Do-Right and his unbelievably spastic laughing, he’s not that bad an actor, and his film resume isn’t that bad, either. Below, check out five Brendan Fraser movies that are actually pretty enjoyable.
Airheads is a pretty solid comedy. While it’s admittedly not carried by Fraser (Sandler and Buscemi are no slouches), it’s pretty rewatchable, which is one of the defining characteristics of a good comedy. Throwing in Michael McKean, a pre-racist outburst Michael Richards, Stuttering John from Howard Stern fame, a Mike Judge voice cameo, and Chris Farley helps a ton, too, but Fraser is undoubtedly the star and does a pretty good job of grounding this tale of wannabe rockers holding a radio station hostage with water guns.
Like Airheads, School Ties has a pretty good cast, and Fraser shows that he can hold his own along the likes of Matt Damon and…well, it’s not like Ben Affleck is a great actor, but still. Fraser plays David Greene, a Jewish student recruited to play quarterback for a Christian prep school back when antisemitism was much more prevalent in upper class society. Greene dominates all aspects of the school, including academics, football, and even the social scene, eventually stealing away the prior alpha male’s girlfriend. Naturally, once it’s discovered that Greene is Jewish, everyone either gives him the cold shoulder or tries to sabotage his future, but Greene manages to persevere through all of it. I’ve always liked this movie a lot and I think it’s easily one of Fraser’s best performances. I know that might not be saying much, so I’ll put it like this: he’s very good in this movie.
I really should have included this movie on my Guilty Pleasures list. Parading Elizabeth Hurley around in all sorts of sexy/slutty outfits is more than enough reason to watch this movie, but Fraser is actually pretty funny in Bedazzled. He hams it up the entire movie, whether he’s playing a gay gay with a huge schlong, a hypersensitive environmentalist, or a poorly-endowed basketball player who always gives 110%. It’s a silly movie, but I think it’s pretty funny – and again, Liz Hurley definitely doesn’t hurt.
I can’t speak for the sequels, but the original Mummy movie is a fun adventure movie that never takes itself too seriously. In fact, I’d say that The Mummy is pretty self-aware; a good example of this is when after someone says something dramatic, thunder can be heard, to which Rick O’Connell (Fraser) responds, “That happens a lot around here, doesn’t it?” It’s not a masterpiece, but The Mummy is pretty entertaining, which is all it really tries to be.
Gods and Monsters
It’s not a hard-line rule by any means, but I think it’s generally a pretty good indication that when a movie is nominated for multiple Academy Award, that movie is pretty good. Awards or not, Gods and Monsters is a very solid film, and the fact that Fraser can hang with the great Sir Ian McKellen on screen speaks measures about his potential. Yeah, the guy can actually act when he’s not, you know, talking to Bugs Bunny or CGI’d forest creatures.
So, are there any Brendan Fraser movies that you guys will admit to enjoying?