Ever since Equilibrium (yep, saw American Psycho a few years later) I have been fascinated by Christian Bale. He does not always pick the perfect movies (Exodus: Gods and Kings anyone?), but he is an excellent actor that really suffers for his roles. The transformations he has made his body go through over the years, are extraordinary.
His look in The Big Short (as Michael Burry) was something else, to say the least. He looked so normal, yet he had these odd looking eyes. I preffered his other strange look: the one he had in American Hustle. I love that movie, that non-surprisingly received a lot of awards for make-up and hair. The first scene is all about hair, or to be more specific: the lack of it.
We watch Irving Rosenfeld, played by Christian Bale, who is struggling with his hair for many minutes. First he takes one strand of hair and puts it all the way up, and then he glues this piece of fake hair to the bald spot on the top of his head. Then the strand of hair that is standing up is put on top of the fake stuff and Rosenfeld is happy about his do. No one will agree with him, cause his hair is sticking out in all the wrong places, but obviously his hair-do is symbolic.
Not that you will think back of his hair a lot, cause throughout the movie there is something else to obsess over, a thing that even gets a close-up of many seconds: the belly. The belly of Bale. His torso might be the most fascinating part of any actor ever. Not because he is flaunting an amazing six pack a la Brad Pitt’s J.D. in Thelma & Louise, or because he has fascinating tattoos like Ryan Gosling’s Luke in A Place Beyond The Pines. Nope: his upper body is so fascinating because it can transform in a matter of weeks.
Did you ever realise that Bale shot his scenes for The Machinist in the exact same year as The Dark Knight? It gets worse: he had to gain forty kilos in five months! So from the scary skinny Machinist to his normal weight, only to build up a lot of muscle for the role of Batman. It will probably give a lot of skinny people out there a lot of inspiration. But Christian is not always inspiring: in American Hustle his character will probably make fitness freaks scream, cause what happened with the skinny, then ripped tummy of Bale..
A beer belly: one of those disgusting old man’s bellies. One that you will see sticking out from a jogging suit on a camp site. I cannot imagine Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams) to ever want to bed this guy with that belly! It is difficult to not fantasize about how Bale does that, all those body changes, when looking at that meat poking out. There should be a new Oscar just for the ‘Best Metamorphosis’, so Bale can pick up that award, wearing an extremely nice tuxedo covering everything. Ha! 😉