Jake Gyllenhaal is one of those actors who has been around long enough to have a huge range of movies. He has had great ones and terrible ones. Recently, you could say that Gyllenhaal has found his stride and has been choosing great projects to star in. Although he was not nominated for any Oscars this year, the future looks bright for him.
Gyllenhaal’s current dedication to his work has skyrocketed with his upcoming movie, Southpaw, and his most recent movie, Nightcrawler. He is joining the ranks of Christian Bale and Gerard Butler as he has gone through massive changes to his appearance. In other words, he has begun to put a lot of work into transforming into his characters. In Nightcrawler, Gyllenhaal lost massive amounts of weight for his role. He had sunken eyes and the whole nine yards. In Southpaw, he plays a boxer. He has gained a lot of muscle for this role, more than he has ever had, and looks like he’s been an athlete his whole life.
Southpaw has not come out yet because it is in postproduction, but Nightcrawler has been out for a while now. Not many people have seen it. It is somewhat of a hidden gem. It is one of those rare movies that relies on the characters to move the plot. When you take a step back, you realize that this movie is excellent but not because of the plot. This movie is amazing because Jake Gyllenhaal plays such a dynamic character.
Gyllenhaal plays a character named Lou who is struggling to find a job that suits him. He does not live a typical life and is always taking up odd jobs such as thievery and scamming people. He then finds an interest in freelance journalism. Lou decides to drive around town with a camera and look for crime scenes to film and sell to the local news station. As he becomes better at his new job, he starts to blur the line and have no limit to what he will do to get a story.
The story is good but it is not the reason why people should watch the movie. Lou is a mysterious character. We do not know much about him and he builds himself as we watch him. Right off the bat, you can see that he is not a normal person. Lou has a strange way about him. He is very introverted, but when he needs something he is a big talker and great negotiator. He is very persistent. You can tell that once he has a goal, he hyper-focuses on it with tunnel vision. It is very interesting when he interacts with people too. He is very unsettling, using fast dialogue and an endless stream of knowledge. He can be charming in a way that a little kid is when he researches something he wants his parents to buy and then presents to them all the reasons they should buy it. This may add to the shock as you see his dark side and how far he is willing to push the boundaries on ethics and abuse.
Nightcrawler is very different from anything that is out there. It is not the best movie, but it should be on everyone’s watch list. By the end of the movie, you are left with your mouth hanging open because you cannot believe what happened. It is also a great experience watching a movie that is driven by a character instead of plot. Jake Gyllenhaal is on a good path right now and it should be interesting to see his future projects. On that note, I believe Mr. Grey is ready to see me.
— Miguel Gonzalez, Film Blogger