What Went Wrong With… Jason Clarke?

An image of Jason Clarke looking dishevelled

Jason Clarke is a weird-looking actor. His dishevelled appearance and angular facial features are either distracting or just unappealing to look at. It’s not like he’s a brilliant character actor – he’s no Jeffrey Wright or Philip Seymor Hoffman for example – Jason Clarke is a middling performer, so why is he routinely cast in lead roles when he has all the looks and acting skills of a leering brickie?

Speaking of skilled labourers, Clarke’s father apparently worked as a sheep shearer. Now I don’t know what an actual sheep shearer looks like but if I was told to mentally picture one, I’d probably think of a bloke who looked not too dissimilar to Jason. To me, Clarke looks more like an on-set carpenter than a Hollywood actor, even his name is humdrum. “Jason Clarke” doesn’t exactly exude greatness.

Recently playing Senator Ted Kennedy in Chappaquiddick, I recall the makers of the movie saying how much he resembled JFK’s brother. To me, Jason Clarke looks like Ted Kennedy in the same way that Dara Ó Briain looks like James McAvoy, basically a fucked-up version of someone famous; a lame counterpart, a shit twin, a tribute-act at best.

Once starring in the C.I.A. propaganda-fest Zero Dark Thirty by Katherine “I Used To Make Decent Movies” Bigelow, I remember Jason’s character reciting lines from the Wu-Tang Clan. His character was so horrid and the actor beneath was equally unpleasant that I almost stomped on my copy of 36 Chambers.

Pretty much every film that Jason Clarke appears in is mediocre; White House Down, Public Enemies, Lawless, Winchester, the aforementioned Zero Dark Thirty, Baz “Garish And Gaudy” Luhrmann‘s The Great Gatsby, Everest, the appalling Terminator Genisys… it’s all celluloidal shite. Aside from the lacklustre writing and direction, much of the boredom brought on whilst watching these films has to do with Clarke’s mundane looks and his bland performances. It’s quite perplexing why this walking moai is famous, I mean he has no star-quality at all, he’s more of a neutron star.

Looking like an industrial skip with a 5 o’clock shadow, Jason Clarke really shouldn’t be on the big screen, in fact he shouldn’t be on the little screen either. If he absolutely has to be in the vicinity of a screen, he should either be behind the screen or he should be fixing the screen; with a builder’s cleavage, sucking the air through his teeth and saying “this is gonna cost ya mate”. With his scruffy-arsed appearance, that would be the most believable role he could ever play.

A Jumped-up Clarke.


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