On today's DVDuesday, Chris Gore will be reviewing Role Models, starring the immortal Paul Rudd. We wanted to take a moment in this column to recognize the good work he's done throughout his career, so if you wanted to have a Rudd Film Festival, you would be more than well-armed with fine material.
Clueless (1995) - Probably the first introduction most of the world had to Rudd's work, Paul played Josh, Alicia Silverstone's half brother, who ends up becoming her boyfriend at the end of the movie. Despite the strange incestuous implications of that event, Rudd is excellent as the Radiohead-loving conscience to Silverstone's Cher in the movie.
The Shape of Things (2003) - Rudd's Adam Sorenson is the object (or, to put it more succinctly, project) of Evelyn Ann Thompson's affection (as portrayed by the always-stunning Rachel Weisz) in this movie written and directed by In The Company Of Men playwright Neil LaBute. He is awesome as a guy in over his head in a relationship that's absolutely nothing like what it seems. Completely devastating, and a good example of what a real dramatic actor Rudd can be when given the chance.
Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) - Who can forget the amazing portrayal of Brian Fantana that Paul Rudd gives in Anchorman, often close to stealing comedic scenes from Will Ferrell and Steve Carell with his gritty, 70's, man-on-the-street newsman character. The couplet of "It's made of real panther, so you know it's good," and "60 percent of the time it works every time" are emblazoned on American film history forever.
Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007) - When John C. Reilly's Dewey Cox meets the Beatles on a spiritual retreat, the casting couldn't be more inappropriate, or more hilarious. Rudd plays John Lennon to Jack Black's Paul McCartney, Justin Long's George Harrison, and Jason Schwartzman's Ringo Starr. "With meditation, there's no limit to what we can...imagine." Freakin' hysterical.
Soon, Rudd will star with Jason Segal, teaming up with him once more after Forgetting Sarah Marshall, in I Love You, Man, in which he plays a guy about to get married who has no male friends, and is looking for a best man. If his previous comedic roles are any indication, he will continue to cement his status as one of the funniest actors working in film today.