The brilliance of this film is chiefly due to Jamie Foxx’s Golden Globe and Oscar-winning performance in so thoroughly bringing to life all of the many aspects of Ray Charles and his genius.
GREAT PERFORMANCES YOU MAY NOT HAVE SEEN:
Law-Abiding Citizen (the D.A.)
The Soloist (Real-life musical genius Nathaniel Ayers)
Collateral (Golden Globe and Oscar-nominated performance as a cab driver for assassin Tom Cruise)
Ali (boxing partner)
Jarheads (Marine sergeant in Iraq)
The Truth About Cats and Dogs
Breakin’ All the Rules
THE REAL FOXX:
People were shocked to find that Jamie Foxx did his own playing and singing. Perhaps they’d be even more shocked to find that the stand-up comedian turned actor studied at Juilliard and won a music scholarship to the United States International University in San Diego.
He’s a stand-up comic, a singer, an action star and a real actor. Unlike even the best of the hyphenates, Foxx can keep them completely separate, except when called on to combine all of them as with Ray (comic, too: Ray Charles succeeded on his sense of humor as well). Ironically, in his other best roles, there is not a hint of comedy. He comes across as wound pretty tight, not too tight but pretty tight.
BITS AND QUIRKS:
The stare and the squint. A gentle but intense threatening nod. A minimal tightly wrapped style. Sneering smile.
Every time he plays, it’s thrilling >> The jail scene > The negotiations over the masters with the record company.
ANY GIVEN SUNDAY:
Vomiting on the field > Fighting with his girlfriend > The “superstar” montage. > Showdown with coach Al Pacino at his house. > The party where he gets his Hummer sawed in half.
Standing by the cab when a body falls out a window right by him.
Finding out he has a daughter at the end > The payola montage
Talking with Jake Gyllenhaal in a foxhole in the midst of the burning oil fields of Iraq.