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Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

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Sean Penn
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Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Old 03-18-12, 01:57 AM
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Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Now I know this may seem like an odd pairing and maybe even an obvious answer but I truly believe Nic Cage has had an oddly deceptive career. Much like a Chris Walken or Dennis Hopper, at first glance they seem like the type of actor who will attach there name to any script that lands on their desk(and they kind of are), but when you go through their resume's and wade through all the garbage you'll notice out of every 4/5 films, theres a real gem of a movie or a great performance. And Cage is no different.

The reason I chose Penn is because I seem to remember back about a decade ago Sean Penn ranting on Nic Cages career choices.

Now from my perspective I really believe Cage has had at the very least as good of a career as Penn, if not better.

And I break it down as follows.


Nicolas Cage Arthouse fair/Critical Hits/great performances:

Raising Arizona
Wild at Heart
Leaving Las Vegas
Bringing Out The Dead
Adaptation
The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call - New Orleans

Sean Penn Arthouse fair/critical hits/great performances:

Fast Times at Ridgemont High
Casualties of War
Carlito's Way
Dead Man Walking
U Turn
The Thin Red Line
Sweet & Lowdown
Mystic River
21 Grams
Milk

good studio popcorn flicks:

Face Off
Con Air
The Rock
Lord of War
Gone in Sixty Seconds
The Weather Man
The Family Man


good studio popcorn flicks:

The Interpreter
Fair Game


To me their careers match up pretty evenly. But I'd take Cage by a hair. The only difference in my opinion is that Cage has a higher volume of crap.

Thoughts?
Old 03-18-12, 02:00 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Con Air, The Weather Man, and Gone in 60 Seconds are good?
Old 03-18-12, 02:02 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

I thought so.
Old 03-18-12, 02:11 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

I'd rather watch Cage than Penn. Even in bad movies, Cage is worth watching for me. Penn only grabs me sometimes - hated Mystic River,loved Milk.
Old 03-18-12, 02:42 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

How is Bringing Out the Dead a critical favorite, but not Tree of Life?
Old 03-18-12, 03:31 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

I didn't include Tree of Life because Penn is in it for about 5 minutes. and the runtime is somewhere in the vaccinty of 2.5 hours. It would have been akin to including Cage in Fast Times At Ridgemont High.
Old 03-18-12, 06:23 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Why don't you list all of their films instead of picking and choosing?

Some of the ones you have not named that I am a fan of; Falcon and the Snowman, At Close Range, Hurly Burly, The Game, The Assassinantion of Richard Nixon, Colors...

Looking at their entire film resume and not just what you wanted to list...Penn by a wide margin. He has consistently chosen more interesting films, much more challenging roles and is obviously not a money whore like Cage.

The fact that there are people here who feel that Cage has had a better career than Penn boggles my mind.

Last edited by Jaymole; 03-18-12 at 06:33 AM.
Old 03-18-12, 06:45 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Sean Penn for sure. Cage has had a better financial career but if you're taking them for their quality in craft? Penn. Cage doesn't even come close. 4 shit films to get to a good Cage movie? Fuck that.
Old 03-18-12, 07:07 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

What? No Wicker Man?
Old 03-18-12, 08:29 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

What? No She's So Lovely?
Old 03-18-12, 09:12 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Definitely Sean Penn. Should've beaten Cage for the Oscar with Dead Man Walking, too.
Old 03-18-12, 09:14 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

As much as I can't stand Sean Penn's politics, the guy is a great actor had a much better career compared to the much overrated Cage.
Old 03-18-12, 09:21 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

You never go full retard.
Old 03-18-12, 10:20 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Easily Penn for me.
Old 03-18-12, 10:46 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

cage better actorist
Old 03-18-12, 10:59 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Sean Penn is probably the better of the two technically, but I enjoy Nicolas Cage more personally.
Old 03-18-12, 10:59 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Jeff Spicoli > "Hi" McDonnough
Old 03-18-12, 11:34 AM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Sean Penn.
Old 03-18-12, 12:01 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Can't really answer this until I get some kind of definition of what "better acting career" might possibly mean....Appeared in better movies? More likeable on the screen? More likeable off the screen? Made more money? Has more innate talent? Did more with what he's got?
Old 03-18-12, 12:14 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Originally Posted by AVP77
Can't really answer this until I get some kind of definition of what "better acting career" might possibly mean....Appeared in better movies? More likeable on the screen? More likeable off the screen? Made more money? Has more innate talent? Did more with what he's got?
I almost posted the same thing because a film career is different than film talent.

But I still think Penn is the choice on both.
Old 03-18-12, 12:21 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

I like both, but believe Penn has proven to be a better actor.
Old 03-18-12, 12:46 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Penn hasn't performed a single starring role I'd want to see again (except maybe for CASUALTIES OF WAR), but Cage has done two I'd happily watch again: RED ROCK WEST and FACE/OFF, so Cage wins it for me.
Old 03-18-12, 12:48 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

You created a thread talking about the good Nic Cage performances, and you leave out Matchstick Men?
Old 03-18-12, 01:29 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

I think Nicolas Cage is a better actor but agree with Penn's political views, so I voted for him.
Old 03-18-12, 02:50 PM
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Re: Who's had a better acting career, Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage?

Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
I think Nicolas Cage is a better actor but agree with Penn's political views, so I voted for him.
Finally some common sense!

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