idiggory, King of Bards wrote:
What Logos said. It's been WAY too long since Depp has done something different, and that's worrisome. Even Sweeney Todd was just, essentially, a darker version of the same character.
He was great in Edward Scissorhands and Finding Neverland. I don't really remember Once Upon a Time in Mexico, so I can't comment there. Sleepy Hollow was very, very similar to his more recent roles (big surprise, Burton and all).
But POC came out in 2003, and he's been pretty much playing nothing but the same character since then. After a decade, I think it's fair to stop using the earliest works as a guidepost. Either he lost whatever he had that let him meld into the earlier roles, or he's just not interested in it anymore. It's not really that unheard of for actors to lose the ability to really move between roles, with life being what it is. And if all you're going to do for a decade is play Captain-Jack-Sparrow-In-Different-Outfits, then that's how I'm going to think of you.
I'd love to see him do some serious work. Until it happens, that judgement is going to stand. And at this point, I seriously worry he might not be able to pull anything else off. Everything else he's been in, where he isn't playing a Sparrow-esque character, has flopped. And he's usually a leading role. So either he has terrible taste, and keeps choosing films destined for failure, or he's lost the ability to help bring serious films to life.
Sweeney Todd was nothing like Captain Jack. In fact, i think Captain Jack is a bit of an outlier role for J. Depp. He's not really the swashbuckler. I'd clump Mad Hatter with Barnabas Collins but they're both Burton movies. Id' say the one thing that his recent roles have all had in common is that they are all in movies that lack any depth what-so-ever.
I thought Rango could have been a good movie, and Rango a good role... if it hadn't been acted out by computer generated desert critters. It was very much a human tale after-all.
I think my favorite Depp movie is What's Eating Gilbert Grape. Leo really showed off his acting skills as well.