This has been a bad week for America, but a great one for Nicolas Cage fans. (If you’re a Nicolas Cage fan living in America, then you’re (I’m) emotionally conflicted.) According to Deadline, Cage has agreed to star in Pig, in which he plays a truffle hunter “who lives alone in the Oregonian wilderness. When his beloved foraging pig is kidnapped, he must journey into Portland — and his long-abandoned past — to recover her.” Let that sink in: Nicolas Cage … living alone in the wilderness … with a “beloved” truffle-hunting pig … that gets kidnapped. OK! Pig is still in the pre-production phase, but I’m ready to give it Best Picture (and Best Pigture). Lionsgate at Home also gifted us with the trailer for Primal, which swaps the truffle pig for a “priceless white jaguar.” From the synopsis:
When Frank Walsh (Nicolas Cage), a hunter and collector of rare and exotic animals, bags a priceless white jaguar for a zoo, he figures it’ll be smooth sailing to a big payday. But the ship bearing Frank’s precious cargo has two predators caged in its hold: the cat, and a political assassin being extradited to the U.S. After the assassin breaks free – and then frees the jaguar – Frank feverishly stalks the ship’s cramped corridors in hot pursuit of his prey, right up until the thrilling, unpredictable climax.
I would watch Primal based on the premise alone; Pig, too. This is true for much of Cage’s recent work, which I’ve ranked from the films with the least-nutty premise to the most. A few things to note: 2013 was my starting point; I only included movies that *aren’t* on his Box Office Mojo page, meaning no Mandy (but plenty of direct-to-video titles!), and left out big-budget hits, like Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, and documentaries. I also copied/pasted the premises from either Deadline, Rotten Tomatoes, or Amazon Prime, with a link for each to prove that I’m not making these movies up. After reading what Outcast is about, I wouldn’t blame you for thinking that.
19. A Score to Settle (2019)
Diagnosed with a fatal condition, Frankie Carver (Nicolas Cage) is released from prison after serving 19 years. With only a short time left to live, Frankie must desperately try to make amends with the son he left behind while he plots a bloody course of revenge – tracking down his old gang to make them pay one by one. (Via)
A Score to Settle came out last month. Have you ever heard of it? I have not. It has the same painfully generic plot summary as any number of films on Redbox, but also an incredible (and by “incredible,” I mean, 10 minutes on Photoshop) poster, which, as you’ll soon discover, is a trend among post-2013 Nicolas Cage movies.
18. The Frozen Ground (2013)
The movie revolves around Alaska’s most notorious serial predator Robert Hansen (John Cusack), who in the span of 12 years abducted more than 24 women, flew them into the Alaskan wilderness, and hunted and murdered them. Vanessa Hudgens plays the one teenage victim who escaped, and Nicolas Cage plays the Alaskan State Trooper who finds her on the street — together they work to bring Hansen to justice. (Via)