This Tom Cruise Role Won Us Hollywood Gold Without Its Deadly Stunts

Forty years after breaking into the film industry, Tom Cruise’s enduring legacy is a force to be reckoned with. The 61-year-old mogul has dabbled in a wide variety of film roles and regularly courted some of Hollywood’s most iconic actors and filmmakers, with an exceptionally rich career that shows no signs of slowing down. While he has an unrivaled ability to consistently outdo himself as the greatest action star of his generation, his abilities as a comedic and dramatic performer can’t be ignored — especially in ” risky business.

Although it is a safe assumption Mission: Impossible Dead Reckoning Part 1 It will be one of the most jaw-dropping cinematic experiences of the year, but it’s also easy to overlook Cruise’s wide-ranging performance, which is characterized by versatility, nuance and experimentation.As the 40th anniversary approaches, people don’t have to look any further at the actor’s work risky business It’s a timeless example of his ability to make movies without massive action sequences, deadly stunts, and easy sprints.

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What is “Risk Business”?

Tom Cruise as Joel Goodson in Dangerous Business
Image via Warner Bros.

He stepped onto the action train more than a decade ago as superspy Ethan Hunt. Mission impossibleTom Cruise captivated audiences as Joel Goodson. Paul Brickman1983 comedy. Joel is upright, studious, and innocent, a typical representative of an upright all-American teenager. On the verge of high school graduation and eager to get into a prestigious college, he gives his parents the keys to their high society suburban kingdom when they leave him home alone for a few days.

Inspired by his friend’s “something to say now and then,” Joel gives in to a rash urge and enlists Lana’s help (Rebecca De Mornay), a call girl from Chicago. Their late-night interactions lead to a series of more questionable decisions, and the dominoes quickly fall as Joel’s academic future is jeopardized, and he also becomes the target of a vengeful pimp (Joe Pantoliano). But thanks to his industrious and quick-thinking nature as a scholar, the young Ivy League hopeful devised a series of impromptu schemes to dig himself out of dangerous pits.

Sarcastic, hilarious and uncharacteristically intelligent for what is usually considered your average teen comedy, risky business Released in August 1983, the film was well received. The film, which grossed $63 million on a $6.2 million budget, established 21-year-old Tom Cruise as the leading man and earned him a Golden Globe nomination. But it was never a sure thing that the movie would be a box office success, or that the unheralded Cruise’s performance would win over critics and moviegoers alike.

What made Tom Cruise’s Risky Business so good?

Tom Cruise dances in Dangerous Business
Image via Warner Bros.

beat someone you like Sean Penn, Gary Sinise, Kevin Baconand John Cusack19-year-old Tom Cruise (Tom Cruise) in risky business He’s only been in three films before, all in supporting roles.His first real exposure was in 1981 Faucetin which he starred alongside penn Timothy Hutton His transformation into the shy, baby-faced Joel Goodson is all the more unexpected and jarring as a crazed Marine in military academy. But his performance ultimately set the stage for a rising star, giving audiences a glimpse of a disciplined performer who would captivate their attention for decades to come.

Cruise’s character is charming and likable from the first frame to the end credits, and even in the film’s early shots, Joel appears as a passive and uncertain student. As the character’s relationship with Lana continues to develop, and the impending Wall of Aftermath looms, Cruise also gets ample opportunity to showcase his comedic talents, which he’s oft-overlooked but perfectly capable of. He doesn’t try to upstage his co-star, or go all in on it, and instead allows Joel to project an sincerity that comes across when the character finds himself in an increasingly fraught but undeniably hilarious predicament of his own making. Sincerity produces real laughter.

How does Tom Cruise make Joel’s storyline believable?

Tom Cruise as Joel Goodson in Dangerous Business (1983)
Image via Warner Bros.

While on the surface this might seem like a hilarious teenage romp, risky business In fact, it’s an effective character-driven film that explores the mentality and aspirations of young people in the Reagan era. Cruise carries the weight of the film on his shoulders, showing up in every scene, effectively maintaining himself as the protagonist, who often communicates with his expressive face, as if he were narrating Paul Brickman As in clever dialogue. He casts Joel not as a passive participant in a journey of self-discovery, but as a flawed and dynamic protagonist whose transformative arc drives the narrative from beginning to end.

When we first meet Joel, he’s as timid as ever. He obsesses over test scores, extracurricular activities, and college applications, with a particular focus on how best to be a “future entrepreneur.” Cruise brings a wide-eyed sense of wonder and innocence to the character, reminding us all of our classmates whose brilliant achievements in the classroom often came at the expense of everyday common sense and a thriving social life. costly. Perhaps unsurprisingly, when Joel got his first taste of freedom, his definition of rebellious behavior consisted of pouring a pint, driving Dad’s Porsche for a spin, and tweaking the equalizer on the home stereo so he could play in the house. dance to “Old Time Rock”. “.

However, after befriending Lana and a series of ill-fated adventures, Joel learns more about himself and the cutthroat business world than he ever learned in class. As the film progresses, Tom Cruise always portrays Joel’s transformation convincingly, slowly but surely stripping away the character’s bad emotions in favor of a constant display of budding confidence. As Joel uses his business acumen to fix his father’s wrecked Porsche, dons Ray-Ban sunglasses, and coaxes his peers into checking out the makeshift brothel offered by Lana’s co-workers, Joel is no longer a humble people. For the first time we were introduced to high achievers. While Joel has his classmates, and college recruiters, Cruise captivates us as viewers just as much.

How does Joel’s arc parallel Tom Cruise’s career trajectory?

Tom Cruise and Rebecca De Mornay in
Image via Warner Bros.

After more than forty years of acting, Tom Cruise has certainly come a long way since playing Joel Goodman. Given his status as one of the world’s greatest movie stars, it’s tempting to compare his career trajectory to that of his first leading role. After high school, he came to Hollywood with ambitious goals, using his ardent work ethic to carve out a path to success, one generation after another.

But being successful in front of the camera wasn’t enough, and his desire to entertain global audiences eventually extended behind the scenes as he took on more responsibilities as a producer. His personal approach to storytelling creates a specific brand of filmmaking that allows for a degree of autonomy driven by creative instinct and company expertise. Instead of going to a Tom Cruise movie, we’re going to watch a Tom Cruise movie through and through. Like Joel, Cruise cannot simply be involved in the business.With his dedication, intense focus and creativity, he become enterprise.

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