Nicolas Cage is back, not that he went anywhere

“The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” review


The official movie poster for the film “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent.” Stating that “Nicolas Cage is Nick Cage.” Image retrieved from Houston Press.

Hannah Hunt, Co-Managing Editor

For the first time since 2007, a Nicolas Cage film has appeared in theaters! In his latest film, “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent,” Cage portrays himself. The story follows Cage’s struggle between stardom, debt and family life. 

Warning: there are spoilers ahead.

The film opens with Cage struggling to find work in high paying films that are worthy of him staring in. He is staying in a hotel after his divorce from his wife Olivia (played by Sharon Horgan), in which he owes $600,000 for his stay. This pushes him to take a gig to appear at a birthday party of his superfan, Javi Gutierrez (played by Pedro Pascal). 

Just before flying out to the birthday party, Cage decides to retire from acting in order to try and be a better father to his daughter.

Cage is intercepted by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), agents Vivian (played by Tiffany Haddish) and Martin (played by Ike Barinholtz), and is convinced to spy on Gutierrez, who is suspected for the kidnapping of Maria, the daughter of an anti-crime politician. After some persuasion, Cage reluctantly agrees. 

This is when the film truly begins to ramp up, with the action from Cage’s spying, the budding friendship between Cage and Gutierrez and the mystery of the kidnapping hanging over the heads of all the characters. The two friends also begin to write a movie together during this time, which was Cage’s excuse to stay longer and spy on Gutierrez.

However, while writing their movie, the two bond with each other and turn this into a buddy film. Throughout the film, viewers are unsure whether to trust Gutierrez; he is a likable character, but is clearly keeping secrets. As the story unfolds more, one of these secrets that comes to light is a Nicolas Cage shrine hidden behind a locked door disguised as a mirror.

Although this is a harmless secret, it is the way he acts that makes him seem untrustworthy. He even goes to the extreme of bringing Cage’s ex-wife and daughter to his home for a meal. This action alone is what brings Cage to the conclusion that he has to kill Gutierrez for threatening his family. However, during Cage’s realization, it is revealed that Gutierrez was unaware of the kidnapping. It was in fact his cousin who kidnapped the politician’s daughter, and then threatened to kill Gutierrez if he did not in turn kill Cage.

After they both get each other alone, the two try to kill each other only to discover that their friendship is too strong and that they are “the last [people] on Earth that [they] would want to kill,” according to Cage. After this revelation, it’s announced that Cage’s daughter was kidnapped to be killed along with the politician’s daughter.

This film was a cinematic masterpiece. It was funny, action packed and kept viewers engaged. The inclusion of all the former Cage movie references allowed Cage fans to enjoy, but they were not the pillars of the story. This made it easy to understand if a viewer had not seen infamous Cage films such as “Con Air” or “Face/off.” It was an enjoyable and very funny movie. Plus, who does not want to watch Cage make-out with himself?

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