Dec 072005
Authors: Steven Gross

Mix together a 6'5", 250-pound man-beast, a dozen delicious catch phrases, an ego-maniacal personality, two tons of testosterone, no acting school and a dash of cinnamon (for flavor), and you'll have the recipe for just about every WWE wrestler who has ever existed. While this concoction may leave a wrestling fan's nostrils wanting more, it's bound to leave most moviegoers saying p-double-u.

Dwayne Johnson, better known as "The Rock," has thrown in his wrestling Speedo in order to pursue a more clothed career in Hollywood. How does one transition from the "People's Champion" of wrestling into an Academy Award-winning actor? They don't.

"The Rock says know your role and shut your mouth;" if only he had taken his own advice.

The Rock began his film career with a cameo in "The Mummy Returns" in 2001. He's gone on to star in such "classic" movies as "The Scorpion King", "The Rundown" and, most recently, "Doom".

As a male, I'm naturally drawn to overly destructive action movies with cheesy one-liners, but there's something missing with The Rock; and it's not his severe lack of acting skills or unbelievable personas – action stars don't need to bother with that.

If there's anything that Hollywood has taught us about famous action stars, it's that they need bad accents and an even worse case of sexism to make it big in the industry.

What makes Jean Claude Van Damme and Arnold Schwarzenegger movies so great is that instead of focusing on how abysmal and flawed the plots are, moviegoers spend most of their time trying to figure out what these actors just said and if it was even English. What The Rock needs to improve his acting career is a terrible accent (perhaps Jamaican?) and a wandering hand.

Until then, I've come up with a way to enjoy the violence and mayhem of The Rock's movies without having to feel embarrassed by the unbearable dialogue and terrible acting — every time The Rock starts to say something dramatic, simply imagine him bellowing out one of his infamous wrestling quotes instead. For example, whenever he meets someone and he or she gives him a name, just imagine him responding with "It doesn't matter what your name is!"

Apparently, it also doesn't matter what your qualifications are — The Rock seems to be an unstoppable force as he's laying the smack-down on tinsel town with back-to-back releases. The Rock is currently scheduled to appear in six more movies over the next two years, including a starring role in "Johnny Bravo". This Rock has started rolling down Hollywood Hills, and even children are helpless to get out of the way of its overwhelming momentum.

While there's something magical about an oversized man in a tiny Speedo speaking in third person in the wrestling ring, it's just not working for me on the big screen. Luckily for The Rock, it doesn't matter what I think, as he continues to be a mediocre success in the film industry. Like it or not, if you don't feed his career with your hard earned money, I'm sure he'll have no problem taking one of his DVDs, "shining it up real nice, turning it sideways, and sticking it straight up your candy expletive deleted."

Steven Gross is a senior finance major. His column appears every Thursday in Verve.

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