Movie Reviews: Hollywoodland
Ben Affleck is seeing something that has eluded him for a long time -- good reviews. There are plenty of them for his performance as actor George Reeves -- who played Superman in the 1950s' TV series -- in Hollywoodland. Gene Seymour in Newsweek writes: "Ben Affleck's portrayal of Reeves epitomizes the movie's solicitousness and grace. Affleck gives his all to his star-crossed character, evoking Reeves' vocal inflections and physical presence (even his creeping middle-age puffiness) with startling precision and affecting sympathy." Chris Kaltenbach in the Baltimore Sun writes: "The scenes featuring Reeves, played with just the right mix of professionalism and exasperation by Ben Affleck, are the best things about Hollywoodland." Susan Walker in the Toronto Star comments, almost in amazement: "Somehow Ben Affleck is perfect as ... Reeves." And Philip Wuntch in the Dallas Morning News concludes: "Affleck's thoughtful performance reflects the despair of a natural-born charmer who discovers that charm isn't enough to reach Hollywood's heights. Those who insist that Mr. Reeves' rise and fall mirrors Mr. Affleck's career trajectory are entitled to their opinions, but Hollywoodland definitely is an upward step." Several critics agree, however, that Affleck is better than the film itself. As Manohla Dargis writes in the New York Times: "Ben Affleck has packed on the pounds, slipped on some tights and given this exasperating film far more than it gives in return."