Can Nicholas Cage ride a bicycle?

Once upon a time, in the grand old hay day of the silver screen when actors were men and actresses women, there were certain essential skills which an actor had to have if he was to stand a chance of starring in anything. These were useful things like fencing, horse riding, acting etc. Nowadays it would appear that even riding a bicycle might be beyond the ability of today’s stars…

Who would have thought that the mighty Nicholas Cage, that bastion of subtle skill and ability to convey any emotion you care to name through excessive shouting, actually seems like a man fresh off the stabilisers? There’s an ever so short snippet from 1.10 onwards, in the sterling remake of the Wicker Man, starring the versatile Cage, where the poor chap tries to wrestle with the complexities of riding a bicycle. It is perhaps not the best example of Cage’s panache while pedalling as demonstrated in the film…but it should give some idea as to his abilities – which look rather…well…shaky. This and the way he treats a number of quite venerable steeds throughout the film more than suggests to me that the man is not a lover of two wheels (unless a throaty roar can be heard emerging from between his legs as he rides).

Or then again perhaps it is testament to his superb acting skills that he is able to convey the panic, fear and urgency his character felt, while trying to control the bone shaker his bum rested upon. Still I doubt this, for the man spends more than half his time pushing the iron shire horse of a bike, rather than pedalling.

Anyway…apart from this, it is a superb film, and can justifiably claim to be up there with Mega Shark vs Giant Octopus for sheer tension and drama. Many thanks to both Surrey Cricket Blog and Would Like to Eat for sharing such a treat with me.

Still, Cage’s wobbliness started the grey matter churning, and I have since begun to wonder about the benefit of a wobble. There has been some talk in the past on the GBB about wobbling being a good way to ensure drivers steer well clear of the cyclist, and I should think it is true…but I cannot quite get over the idea that a controlled wobble is well beyond my meagre abilities, and I should most likely end up flat on my face, beneath a heavy good’s vehicles rear tyres. Surely control of the machine is far better than a faux-swerve to warn off drivers, as one can swiftly manoeuvre the wheels out of trouble (hopefully) rather than trying to rectify a wobble? And if there is a need for wobbling to create the illusion of safety then should you be on such a busy road in the first place?

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4 responses to “Can Nicholas Cage ride a bicycle?

  1. Dear On The Bummel,

    yet again you have surpassed yourself with a blog of sparkling wit and erudite observations.

    It goes without saying that Cage is the finest actor of our, or indeed any, generation. This film is him at his best and I cannot fathom that he – a man of such talent – would be unable to ride a bike proficiently. I think this is another bravura display of his talents. He wants you to think he is a shaky cyclist. The man could surely take on the likes of Jan Ullrich or Jacques Anquetil without breaking a sweat.

    Thank you so for drawing this matter to my attention,

    yours,
    WouldLikeToEat x

  2. Superb, a truly magnificent film. I remain convinced that the scene where you see him ‘cycling’ is actually clever Hollywood trickery, green screens and that, you know.

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