Nicolas Cage is one of those actors who’s always looking for an edge. That certain something to elevate a character beyond what’s written in the script. In Kick Ass, his genius was in playing Big Daddy as Adam West’s Batman – but only when he’s actually in costume. In Wild At Heart, Cage’s dance-like body language added a predatory, unsettling twang to a film that’s often reviewed as a rom-com. In Leaving Las Vegas, he was at his most sober, understated, and poignant.
There’s an intensity about Nicholas Cage’s onscreen persona that’s led to entire internet sites dedicated to the actor ‘losing his sh*t’. But reducing his appearances to lists of quirky one-liners and physical ticks does Cage a great disservice. If you pay for Bruce Willis, you get Bruce Willis. Pay for Nicolas Cage and you a performance.
In The Trust, he once again brings something wonderful to the table. Lieutenant Jim Stone is a good man and a good cop. Frustrated, disillusioned, lumbered with a a senile father (Jerry Lewis) and zero prospects, he’s also a seething mass of resentment and suppressed rage.
After stumbling across a paper trail that leads to a hidden cache of drug money, Stone enlists David Waters, a disillusioned stoner colleague (Elijah Wood), and sets about planning the perfect heist. However, as stakes are raised, Stone’s veneer of zen calm begins to crumble and Waters suddenly realises just how psychotic this bad lieutenant is.
The Brewer Brother’s directorial debut is a melange of witty dialogue, oddball characters, and dark humour. Like that other sibling duo – the Coen Brothers – the Brewers also clearly know how to cast a movie too. The result is a hugely watchable cop drama. Tense in all the right places, with a clever script, and an on-screen pairing of Wood and Cage that’s wonderfully free of buddy-cop cliches.