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The nicest compliment I ever got as an actor was from an acquaintance: "I forgot that was you up there."

That's the standard I judge a performance by, if I need to gauge a quick reaction to a film.

Matt Damon in "Good Shepherd"? Nice job.

Matt Damon in "Good Will Hunting"? Um, no.

Matt Damon in "Saving Private Ryan"? Adequate.

Matt Damon in the Bourne Trilogy? Good in the second, lousy in the first, so-so in the third.

Et alia.

My suspicion is, if Damon gets a decent director (Scorsese seems to have a knack of getting good performances out of marginal actors, but the fact that he'll cast a Daniel Day-Lewis or a Robert DeNiro doesn't hurt), and as you point out, keeps Ben Affleck the hell off the set, he should be OK.


I enjoyed The Informant! I also sorta enjoy the Mannion thought process...


Ha, I love the Mannion thought process too.. it's why I keep coming back for another good read, he works out his musings on the page with intelligence and style, in a distinct "voice".

I remember when Good Will Hunting came out, the big hook for stories about Damon/Affleck was how they had slaved over the screenplay, and were passionate about getting the film made, indie style, integrity, not Hollywood. Since then, many many things have cast serious doubt as to whether they actually wrote GWH, rather convincingly. But it was a good hook for the press. People wondered why they didn't write another movie, then- choosing to aggressively pursue becoming movie stars instead was seen as a sell-out (yes, the internet existed in 1997). But it's hard to blame them: become a high-paid movie star adulated, or a lowly writer? A no-brainer. I like Damon: he was superb in Talented Mr. Ripley, I think.

That 90's indie/DIY film-making ethos he was keen on espousing seems a century ago though, long gone. And nothing wrong with that.

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