Bill Murray‘s turn in Lost in Translation sounds about right here. His performance as aging actor Bob Harris, struggling through a mid-life crisis while being stuck in Tokyo to shoot a whiskey commercial, amazes at every turn. He is a man tired of everything yet vaguely stoic about it. Even though we never get to see it on the screen, we fully realize that Bob was once a very charismatic and charming guy. Not so much now, as he handles most everything with a tired dead-pan approach. He makes small jokes and quips at times when he feels like it, but most of the time he doesn’t.
And Murray plays it perfectly in the way that only he could. He says as much with a blank stare as most actors do with a three minute monologue. Whether Bob’s channeling James Bond and Frank Sinatra during a photo shoot, trying to reconnect emotionally with his wife on the phone or just having a serene heart-to-heart with Scarlett Johansson’s Charlotte, Murray is pitch-perfect all the way through.
And he sings Roxy Music too!