The Boyfriend of the Week

February 21, 1999

This week's Boyfriend is someone I've had on my Future Boyfriends list for a really long time, but I keep losing that list and forgetting who's on it and then finding it right after I've already put somebody else up. That's the price I pay for having such a unique organizational style, I suppose (though my mom might argue, as she often does when speaking of Hemingway, "The lack of style is NOT a style"). Anyway, he's here now and it's actually a pretty well-timed appearance, for reasons I'll get to in a minute.

Denzel Washington is not just a cutie, he's also a very interesting actor. He's been in a few dozen films, which isn't actually a lot, considering how long he's been out there. But he's played a wide variety of characters, and he's played them all well -- and that's someothing that really sets him apart from a lot of other major Hollywood draws. I think I first fell in love with Denzel when I saw him play one of my high school heroes, Steven Biko, in the film Cry Freedom (also starring ex-Boyfriend Kevin Kline!). Boy, was he a great Steve Biko. Then I kind of lost track of what he was up to and forgot to watch out for him until college, when I saw Mo' Better Blues for the first time.

There's just something about trumpet-players that gets me every time. Not to mention the fact it was the first time I really noticed Denzel's voice, which is the kind of voice you crave after a hard day. It's a cuddle-up voice -- smooth and deep like slow jazz. Ever since then, I've tried to catch almost everything Denzel's been in. Even the big Hollywood movies, like "Courage Under Fire," which I probably wouldn't have seen if not for it's star (and I don't mean Meg Ryan, either).

I just found out, however, that Denzel's about to star in a movie based on a book I read about two weeks ago, hence the timeliness of this presentation. The bad news is I remember thinking all throughout the book that they'd really better NOT make a movie out of it -- it was gruesome and violent and scary. It was hard enough to sit through just having to imagine the details and unless the gore were handled as well as the similar types of scenes were handled in the movie "Seven," there'd be no way I could sit through it on the big screen. Normal people would just shrug and say, "Well, guess I'll skip THAT one," but I'm just no good at saying no to a mystery. Not even a bad one.

Anyway, imagine my surprise (actually, I wasn't really THAT surprised) when I got to the last page of the book and it said, "Soon to be a major motion picture!" Then imagine my EXTREME surprise when I logged onto the Internet Movie Database and saw Denzel was going to star as the wheelchair-bound forensics expert. He's nothing like the image I'd had in my head (in my head, the guy looked more like Fitz from "Cracker"). Denzel's too good looking and too gentle in appearance to play someone who's spent a lifetime looking at mutilated and murdered bodies.

However, I'm sure he'll pull it off just fine. And I'll probably go, too, just to see him do it. But I'm not happy about this, folks! Denzel should stick to playing trumpeteers and romantic leads. There aren't even any kissing scenes in this one!

Anyway, you can watch for it (the book was called "The Bone Collector," by the way). Or you can just hit the video store and rent a bunch of classic Denzel movies instead. You can't go wrong with any of them, not even the bad ones (which I won't list for fear of offending any fans out there). Denzel has a presence that cannot be ignored no matter WHAT the dialogue coming out of his mouth is. He's not just incredibly gorgeous, he's art -- literature, drama, and music all rolled into one smooth creature. Oh, and sculpture. Boy, is he EVER sculpture. . . I did say incredibly gorgeous, didn't I?

MacGyver Factor Score: 96.4%. Points off for no good damn reason. Who's in charge here anyway??

Click here to see IMDB's page on Denzel.


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