Crime Action Blockbusters: Performing Shaken, Not Stirred

  • Daniel Smith-Rowsey
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Screen Industries and Performance book series (PSSIP)


Smith-Rowsey asserts a radical defense of blockbuster performances by admitting that Meryl Streep-class-acting does not drive many blockbusters whilst arguing that many blockbusters would not have cast Streep-level performers even if they could have. In the blockbuster sub-genre of crime action, where criminals and crime-fighters represent alienation and disillusionment, Smith-Rowsey claims that lonely aggression does not require, and may even find problematic, unpredictable acting. Smith-Rowsey takes close looks at the “mugging,” near-bulletproof style of early James Bond films and of Bruce Willis as John McClane in Die Hard (1988). The author contrasts the devil-may-care performative style of Sean Connery as 007 to the more sober and intense Daniel Craig in the same role. Smith-Rowsey also shines a light on the taciturn style of Vin Diesel as Dom and “ordinary man” style of Paul Walker (and a team of effects artists) as Brian in Furious7 (2015).


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniel Smith-Rowsey
    • 1
  1. 1.Saint Mary’s College of CaliforniaMoragaUSA

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