Rare Cage: The Boy in Blue
Based on the True Story of Ned Hanlan, a illegal runner of alcohol on his row boat, whose business goes under due to the same illegal activity. He is coopted into rowing competitions by another rower, but they become fast friends.
Cage plays Hanlan and worked himself into fantastic shape for the role, his body ripples with muscles like the sea in which he strokes his oars. It’s obvious that he jumped deeply into this role from a physical stand point. At one point he wears a sweater vest with bare arms. Fantastic! It’s hard not to wonder if he used steroids when he does sit ups in his blue Rambo bandana, every muscle tries to escape from his skin.
The movie like the majority of Nic’s early films is a light hearted affair, but also immensely enjoyable. Blue came in 1986 after his first darkly disturbing film Birdy with Matthew Modine. Birdy contains several scenes that still make you cringe at the possibility of what might happen, especially when Birdy is alone in the cage with the canary. It’s hard to imagine a movie from the 80’s that can still shock in that way, especially a seemingly simple drama.
Young Cage still has his buck front teeth with the seismic gap between them. His laugh is goofy and boyish and his light blue eyes resemble Paul Newman’s famous baby blues. His eyebrows come daringly close to connecting to forming a uni-brow, he’s unkempt, but not as fully as in his werewolf-esque appearance in Moonstruck. With all the creatures of the night movies recently, it’s hard to believe that Cage hasn’t played a werewolf, which he would thrive in without a doubt, imagine the transformation scene alone and tell me your Cage taste buds don’t click with delight.
The movie also marks the transition into strange Cage, later that year he was immortalized into meme history by his portrayal of Charlie Bodell in Peggy Sue Got Married. He’s never been the same after that and it’s been a great ride for everyone.
Cage delivers on his promise to have a freak out in every movie and his shirtless body yells and screams as he almost tosses his partner over the banister of a steamboat. His partner Bill (David Naughton) is a dead ringer for Robert Downey Jr.
Nedlan is often carried on peoples’ shoulders when victorious, I assume this is the way that Nicolas Cage travels in real life.
Rockyesque training sequence with Cage was absolutely necessary in my viewership of this movie. I knew their would be a training scene set to music, but this is down right majestic.Thank you Blu Ray DVD production company from lowering the price of this film from 40 dollars to under 10, you are a savior.
The Hollywood Defender