Nicolas Cage is back flirting with the big acting awards following his most recent performance in the film Joe. In Joe, Cage plays a role not too dissimilar to his 1995 Oscar-winning performance as Ben Sanderson in Leaving Las Vegas, only this time Nic has taken a completely different approach to his method of acting, an approach that some critics claim has paid off in a big way.

Nicolas Cage Venice Film Fest
Nicolas Cage attends the premiere of Joe at the 70th Venice Film Festival

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In Joe, Cage plays hard-drinking ex-con Joe Ransom, who find his own personal struggles challenged even more when he comes into contact with a troubled teenager (played by Tye Sheridan) that he vows to protect from his alcoholic father. The tale of redemption has been described by Cage himself as "one of the most memorable” films he's worked on (probably not more so than Con Air or Face/Off), in a discussion with the Washington Post, and one that he things challenges a viewer's perspective of what a person's redemption may look like.

“The movie is about whatever you want it to be about,” Cage told the paper. “If it is about a social crisis, that’s perfectly a good thing to have it be about. For me, it was just about trying to make the character come to life.”

Nicolas Cage
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The thespian may have reverted to using a different method in his acting, but in all in was an experience that he thinks helped his as an actor to to further his abilities. He described his time making the film as "more a sensory recall of the past,” than a more method approach. He continued, “[It was] trying to find what those feelings might have been like. And I was happy with those results,” going on to say, “Even though we weren’t drinking, it was all about finding our way to the truth of Joe. If I was going to spin myself in circles, that is what I was going to do.”

And if anything, the film has reinvigorated the 49-year-old into realising that his time in front of the camera is far from coming to an end as he see's only more film roles in his future. He said, “Film performance is a part of me. That is not to say I don’t have fantasies of living a life of contemplation and sitting in the sun, but I can’t just sit by the pool with a Mai Tai. I need to work.”

Joe is one of 20 films competing for the Golden Lion statue at the 70th Venice Film Festival and will be made available on general release in time for awards season 2014.

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