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Thread: English actors doing foreign accents- any good?

  1. #46
    Elite Member penname's Avatar
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    I agree Rene Zellweger has a great ear for the English accent but - sorry Gwynie fans - I thought her London accent in Sliding Doors was far too self-conscious. It made me cringe at times. It was better in some of her other Brit roles. Also, much as I love James Marsters, his accent was well dodgy. Then there's the Divine Depp. Obviously he is utterly perfect in all things so I have no complaints about his accent or anything else. However, (how can I put this?) if he was someone else and he had that same accent, I'd say it was - erm - 'imperfect'. (Tactful enough?!? )

    But here's a thought: Michael Caine is ace, but I really didn't like him in Cider House Rules. I could not get my head around his accent, even if he did win an oscar. Was that bias on my part, or was he as dodgy as I thought?

    Lastly, how about Alan Dale? (OC, NCIS) He's an Aussie but he sounds pretty good at accents to me. Anyone agree?
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    Russell Crowe can do any accent if not his stellar acting more than makes up for any flaws.

    Thing is Americans can't do American accents. State to state varies even within it self. Take Jersey, you've got Jersey mixed in with a bit of New York. Ebonics is everywhere. Southern lingo varies from the slow talking Georgia twang to the faster Virginia twang and then there are the transplants who pick up the accent and mutate it.

    Sorry but I think it's a bit harsh to judge a actor on a accent that isn't distracting. It's when you watch a movie like Alexander that is about a Greek person and you've got the entire cast (except Jolie) speaking with a Irish accent that bothered me.

    Sean Connery never bothered me with his Scottish accent when he played a British spy... Bond

    Nicole Kidman was raked over the coals for her southern accent in Cold Mountain when in fact she was really good.

    Americans are hard on Americans. The critics murdered Mark Wahlberg for his Boston accent - hello the dude was born and raised there.

    I love Michael Caine - he should have played Dumbledore after Harris.

    I hate to admitt it but I don't think Americans try to hard when it comes to British accents maybe we think it's in our DNA so we get a by card.

  3. #48
    Elite Member yanna's Avatar
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    I'm not a native so I can't really judge the really good accents. But I've heard some truly crap ones:

    Keanu Reeves in Dracula. His British accent was so painful, I wanted to bash my head against the nearest wall.

    Ralph Fiennes in The Quiz Show and every other movie where he played an American. Horrible!

    Kevin Costner and pretty much all of the Americans in Prince of Thieves. Were they even trying?

    As Greek accents or whatever, goes, Angelina Jolie in Alexander was unbearable. I'm not even sure what the hell she was going for. Penelope Cruz in Captain Corelli's Mandolin was almost equally bad but that movie was so bad overall, it doesn't matter.

    And as good accents go, Kevin Kline speaking French in French Kiss totally got me. I was ready to catch a hint of an accent but there was nothing. Nothing that I could catch, at least. Also, Forrest Whitaker in The Crying Game, for the longest time I thought that the actor was actually British. And Robert Downey Jr. as Charlie Chaplin was truly amazing.

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    ^^ agreed Kevin Kline was great in French Kiss but since I don't speak French I have no clue if he got the accent right.

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    Silver Member CheriLyn's Avatar
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    Hey, how about my man Gary Oldman? No British actor does accents better than Gary!! He's the best there is, in my opinion. He has done so many different accents that many people don't even realize that he's actually British.

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    I remember when Lucy Lawless used her real voice for Battlestar Galactica (shes from New Zealand) somebody said her accent was so bad And that her being not American was just a tactic from her publicist. What a testament of her voice talent

    Quote Originally Posted by GaPeach View Post
    ^^ agreed Kevin Kline was great in French Kiss but since I don't speak French I have no clue if he got the accent right.
    Hmm, I may need to Netflix this film and give you my take

    As Greek accents or whatever, goes, Angelina Jolie in Alexander was unbearable. I'm not even sure what the hell she was going for. Penelope Cruz in Captain Corelli's Mandolin was almost equally bad but that movie was so bad overall, it doesn't matter.
    Wow, I thought it was good. Maybe I'm ignorant of Greek accents...

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    Elite Member Laurent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheriLyn View Post
    Hey, how about my man Gary Oldman? No British actor does accents better than Gary!! He's the best there is, in my opinion. He has done so many different accents that many people don't even realize that he's actually British.
    I actually thought of him first. He can nail it.
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    Ahhh Commissioner Gordon.

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    Elite Member sweetness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SophieOrangeBerry View Post
    kate blanchett has been good at accents from what i remember.
    She did an excellent southern (Georgia) accent in "The Gift".

    I loved her in that!

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    If my memory serves correctly, Helena Bonham Carter didn't do half-bad with her American accent in "Fight Club."

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    Quote Originally Posted by yanna View Post
    As Greek accents or whatever, goes, Angelina Jolie in Alexander was unbearable. I'm not even sure what the hell she was going for. Penelope Cruz in Captain Corelli's Mandolin was almost equally bad but that movie was so bad overall, it doesn't matter.
    Jolie's was the worst...

    I didn't hear a Greek accent at all.....She sounded like she was from Transylvania.......It reminded me of someone doing a Dracula imitation "Alexander, I want to suck your blood".......awful..

    she sucks as an actress....pretty girl, no talent

    and Nicholas Cage in Corelli's Mandolin was awful as well, you'd never know he is of Italian descent by that terrible accent...That movie was awful, but I liked the book......I hate when they ruin a good book with a crap film
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    Angelina in that movie with Antonio Banderas that I had to watch for a half hour because I wanted to see the sex scene. I still don't know what accent that was supposed to be. God awful.

    I caught Linus Roache (Priest, Dark Knight, Wings of the Dove) on Law and Order. He's new and I think he's doing what he thinks is a NY accent. It's not half bad plus he's cute.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GaPeach View Post
    ^^ agreed Kevin Kline was great in French Kiss but since I don't speak French I have no clue if he got the accent right.
    Argh!!! Apparently his accent was awful. Resident Frenchie LaFolie must lay hands on the DVD...

    ETA: Youtube will do. Just checked: in fact, it's alright, but I remember him being criticized over it.
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    So these threads are kind of different so I don't want to merge them, but I thought y'all might be interested in this one too.

    Worst movie accents

    I love this kind of analysis! I don't always know if someone's accent is bad or not if I haven't heard the real version of it, so I enjoy hearing everyone's perspectives.
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  15. #60
    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Not a movie accent, but of course Madonna's pitiful
    attempt at sounding British is a contender.
    Warren Beatty: actor, director, writer, producer.

    ***** celeb

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