Russell Crowe

Pencil Portrait by Antonio Bosano.

Russell Crowe Pencil Portrait
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Russell Crowe appears to be calming down, after years of confrontational episodes in his life. The 51-year-old, who has starred in films including Noah and A Beautiful Mind,’ told Australian Woman’s Weekly: “You have to be prepared to accept that there are stages in life. So I can’t be the Gladiator forever.”

He has little sympathy for actresses who complain about the lack of opportunities for older women. Dame Janet Suzman, for example, said that casting directors “lose interest” in older actresses, adding: “If you’re peachy and young, the world’s your oyster.”

But Crowe believes the problem comes from 40-year-olds who still want “to play the ingénue, and can’t understand why they’re not being cast as the 21-year-old.”

“If you are willing to live in your own skin, you can work as an actor. If you are trying to pretend that you’re still the young buck when you’re my age, it just doesn’t work.”

That’s Russell – always prepared for some plain talking.

Recommended viewing

LA Confidential (1997)

The Insider (1999)

Gladiator (2000)

A Beautiful Mind (2001)

A Good Year (2006)

It must say a lot about my personality that this is my favourite Crowe movie. There’s something about an actor moving outside of his comfort zone that always appeals to me, and here he’s Max, a London based investment expert who escapes his milieu to visit sleepy Provence to sell a small vineyard he has inherited from his late uncle. Slowly but surely, he reluctantly settles into what ultimately becomes an intoxicating new chapter in his life, as he comes to realize that life is meant to be savored.

Critics were generally ‘down’ on the movie and box office takings were sluggish. Ridley Scott puts distance between himself and the action genre – no guns, drugs, fast car chases – to direct a thoroughly charming feel good movie that will leave any viewer with a warm glow.

The film reunited Scott and Crowe – who first worked together on the Academy Award-winning ‘Gladiator,’ and will appeal to those of a certain age for whom stepping off the treadmill of life becomes a cause célèbre.

The lush village and streaming sunlight portray Provence as an idyllic, magical place.

When Max gets the chance to live a life less manic than the one he is accustomed to, he finds that a good year isn’t dependant on a financial windfall.