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The Colin Firth Bio

The Colin Firth Review – MovieActors.com

by Nate Lee

firth
BEST FILM:

Valmont
Love, Actually
Shakespeare In Love

Though "Love, Actually" and "Shakespeare in Love" are two of the best films ever made – certainly ever written – Firth is just part of the ensemble in the former and the obtuse wealthy villain who buys Shakespeare's beloved Viola (Gwyneth Paltrow) out from under him, literally. "Valmont," though, is the pinnacle of Firth's British lords, and a more than able counterpart to John Malkovich's equally brilliant portrayal of the same character in "Dangerous Liaisons." "Nanny McPhee" and "Pearl Earring" are runners-up.
Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
What a Girl Wants (Amanda Bynes' unknowing father and British aristocrat)
Girl with a Pearl Earring (artist Johannes Vermeer, opposite Scarlett Johansson)
Easy Virtue (a long-suffering British lord and husband)
A Single Man (Golden Globe, SAG, and Oscar-nominated performance as a gay professor in 1962, distraught over the death of his lover)
Where the Truth Lies (a showbiz partner of Kevin Bacon, turned rival for the truth of why they broke up their act)
Apartment Zero (a film buff who takes in a mysterious boarder)
Genova (a recent widower who moves to Italy to start a new life)
Then She Found Me (love story, opposite Helen Hunt)
When Did you Last See Your Father? (a son grappling with years of resentment of his father, Jim Broadbent)
The Advocate (a 15th-century lawyer who must defend a pig)
The Classically British Colin:
Pride and Prejudice (Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy)
Valmont (the titled rapscallion)
Shakespeare in Love (Lord Wessex, Shakespeare's romantic rival, and part of SAG-winning ensemble)
The Importance of Being Earnest (Jack Worthing)
Dorian Gray
My Life So Far (eccentric inventor and lord of a castle in the Highlands)
The Romantic Comedy Colin:
Love, Actually (in love with a Portuguese woman who doesn't understand him)
Nanny McPhee (a poor man with too many unruly kids)
Bridget Jones' Diary (Mark Darcy, opposite Rene Zellweger)
Bridget Jones and the Edge of Reason (Mark Darcy again)
Blockbusters:
Mamma Mia! (one of three father figures)
The English Patient (Kristin Scott Thomas's cuckolded husband, and part of SAG-winning ensemble)
The Real Colin Firth:
Pride and Prejudice

As the heir apparent to the classically trained British lead actors, Firth more than fulfills his obligation to return regularly to the West End to refine his craft on the stage. There, not necessarily through his parts but through his presence, he also refines his aristocratic bent.
Acting Style:
The young British lord. Trained in the classical British theatre, Firth seems most comfortable in period pieces, any period but now. Though he has succeeded quite well in romantic comedies, his often stern, usually aloof, aristocratic bearing demands, well, aristocrats.
Bits and Quirks:
Relies on his voice to create nuances that are often at odds with his expression. He can often look sad or congenial or concerned, and keep a steady, firm voice – and vice versa. His trick is how he can speak without moving his lips, and how it can be a mumbling monotone and still full of meaning. Minimal movement to the point of being stiff. Serious but calm, rarely emotional, yet a powerful actor..
Great Scenes:
Shakespeare In Love

> The audience with Judi Dench as Queen Elizabeth
> Outside the theatre, again with Queen Elizabeth, "missing a bride."

Nanny McPhee

> Dealing with Angela Lansbury as his bossy rich aunt
> Running after the carriage, thinking they've taken his youngest daughter
> The wedding
> The surprise encounters with Emma Thompson as Nanny

Valmont

> Attempting to seduce Meg Tilly by pretending to drown
> every scene between Tilly and Firth, particularly the seduction scenes
> seducing Cecile while dictating a letter and demanding she keep writing

Love, Actually

> Trying to speak Portuguese to his beloved
> Asking her father for her hand in marriage
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