Take a look at the picture to your left. Do you know who that is? Yes, it’s Christian Bale, the actor who saved the Batman franchise. In the movie The Machinist, Christian Bale plays an extremely gaunt individual who has not slept in over a year.
In the beginning of The Machinist, we do not know why he has not slept in over a year; in the end, we do.
The question then is this: Is it worth the time finding out?
As I watched the movie late night, I myself was tired. This is not a movie with constant action, like The Bourne Ultimatum, that will not permit you to sleep. It’s a movie that you keep saying…ok, I’ll give it 10 more minutes. And you keep saying that until the movie is over.
Many actors give great physical sacrifice to a role. I’m reminded of Robert DeNiro in the Untouchables, for which he gained an immense amount of weight to play Al Capone. Or of Matt Damon in Courage under fire, for which he lost 40 lbs and sustained injuries to his internal organs. And who can forget Morgan Spurlock? Me, you say, I don’t know who he is. Think Supersize Me.
Chistian Bale exceeds all of these physical sacrifices for this role in The Machinist. His body appears malnourished to the point of near-death.
Occasionally a movie may be so important that it warrants this deep sacrifice on the part of an actor. This movie is not that movie.
I have seen this movie before in more original forms like Memento or Fight Club, psychological thrillers in which the main character loses his memory or identity.
Curiosity about the main character kept me awake during the Machinist. If nothing else, I wanted to see if we see Christian Bale at his normal weight at any time in the movie.
And the answer is…you gotta watch it to find out 🙂
The Machinist starring Christian Bale Receives
5 out of 10 stars
Get your copy of his latest book entitled Obvious Conclusions, stories of a Midwestern emigrant influenced and corrupted by many years living in San Francisco and abroad. It just received its first outstanding review "...reminiscent of David Sedaris or Augusten Burroughs" on Amazon UK.
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