Amanda Seyfried is puzzling.
She’s gorgeous, almost ethereally so. Her tremendous eyes and full lips call to mind some beautiful alien princess, but she somewhat paradoxically has this girl-next-door vibe. She seems approachable. In a way, she’s Scarlett Johansson at both phases of her career simultaneously: the down-to-earth beauty and the stunning sex-bomb.
Seyfried rose from the ranks of soap opera As the World Turns to make her big-screen debut in the Lindsay Lohan hit, Mean Girls. After that, she did a number of TV guest spots and recurring character appearances until her break-out role in 2008’s Mama Mia! hit theaters. Since then, she’s appeared in almost two movies a year all the while holding down a role on HBO’s drama about polygamists: Big Love.
These movies? Talk about a mixed bag. There’s Jennifer’s Body where she co-stars with Megan Fox who turns into a literally-man-eating succubus. There’s Chloe, where Seyfried plays an obsessed prostitute who latches onto Julienne Moore to steamy but ultimately disastrous results. There’s Red Riding Hood, where…well…she plays Red Riding Hood and In Time sees her star with Justin Timberlake in a futuristic thriller. Then you have her two romantic movies that both came out in 2010, Letters to Juliet and Dear John. Because nothing says box office gold in the Smartphone Era like crying longingly over hand-written correspondence.
These movies were largely panned, and had lukewarm ticket sales at their best. Jennifer’s Body was especially blasted, probably because Megan Fox was controversial at the time. Chloe was a definite art-house entry and did not even see a nationwide release, probably because of its sexual content. Both, however, were decent for what they were and showed that for whatever Seyfried lacks in picking scripts, she more than makes up for in range.
She hits theaters again in this Friday’s Gone, which seems destined to be yet another paint-by-numbers thriller, and probably a flop. But next up is her turn as porn star Linda Lovelace in Lovelace and then a movie version of Les Misérables. Both would seem to have the potential to vault her over this mainstream grind she’s found herself in and put her up with the Elite. I’d certainly hate for her to become for hackneyed romantic tearjerkers what Katherine Heigl has become for shitty romantic comedies, because Seyfried certainly has more potential than that.