Nearly four decades ago, the nephew of a famous film director took his first big screen acting gig playing a character so minor, he didn't even get a name. Six years later, the star in question nabbed a Golden Globe nomination. Before the century was out, he won an Oscar. These days, he also has eight Razzie nominations, but if ever an actor has straddled the vast chasm between the ridiculous and sublime, it's Nicolas Cage.
He has crooned Elvis songs for David Lynch, married Elvis's daughter in real life, acted opposite himself in Adaptation, taken to the skies with criminals in Con Air, named one of his sons after Superman, and starred into two of the worst Marvel-affiliated movies ever thanks to Ghost Rider and its sequel. The list goes on — and over his 37 years in the business, Nicolas Cage has amassed a whopping 95 screen credits.
We could continue, but everyone knows that talking about Nicolas Cage isn't anywhere near as great as watching Nicolas Cage. Also, for some reason, it just feels better to use his entire name. Don't just take our word for it about any of the above, however — take the Melbourne International Film Festival's.
This year, as part of an all-night movie marathon, the fest is joining forces with The Astor Theatre to dedicate Saturday, August 10 (and part of Sunday, August 11) to a 12-hour bout of Nicolas Cage mania. MIFF is calling it Cage-a-Thon, and they've amassed quite the showcase of Nicolas Cage's work across seven films – but let's be honest, they really could've picked any of his flicks and it'd be amazing. Attendees will get into the mood with his latest and maybe greatest in the form of unhinged thriller Mandy, before laughing at the Coen brothers' madcap comedy Raising Arizona and swaggering into neo-noir western territory with Red Rock West. Next comes the unsettling and absurd Vampire's Kiss, folk-horror remake The Wicker Man and the escape-from-hell effort Drive Angry, before it all comes to a close with Con Air.
Tickets cost $35, but the memories you'll have seared into your brain forever will be priceless. A word of warning: a evening spent staring at Nicolas Cage's various crazy grins won't be easy to shake.
Updated July 14.