Let's be honest-- this weekend's 2 Guns doesn't look like anything special, an off-the-rack action thriller that teams up two special agents trying to figure out who set them up and…. sorry, I nodded off midway through that description. But what 2 Guns is really about isn't the plot, but its actors-- it's the first chance we've ever gotten to see Mark Wahlberg and Denzel Washington team up, and that's enough to make it worthwhile. You'd think the two charismatic stars would have crossed paths by now, but it might be very logical Hollywood math that's kept them apart. Either one of them is enough to draw in a huge audience who will see them in anything. Neither really needs the backup.

Even if Wahlberg and Washington don't do it for you, you know what we're talking about. Everyone has a certain actor who, for whatever reason, they will watch in anything, even when so much of what that actor does is crap. It's how Bruce Willis movies like A Good Day to Die Hard make $300 million worldwide. It's how Adam Sandler has created a mini-empire. There are actors we will all forgive over and over again, because for whatever reason they're compulsively watchable no matter what. And as we prepare for 2 Guns to prove that point about Wahlberg and Washington, we're pausing to celebrate some of our other favorites-- the actors we can't stop watching, even when the movies that surround them are terrible. We just can't let them go, and no matter what crap we sit through for them, we don't even want to.

Tom Cruise

Three years ago, I walked into a movie theater in Minneapolis, Minnesota with confidence. I knew, despite all the horrible trailers, the lame marketing and the objections of my extended family, that what we were about to watch would be passable. I knew, regardless of how uninspired and aimless the script and direction might be, Tom Cruise would find a way to make Knight And Day not suck. Through sheer force of talent and swagger, I knew he would will the project to mediocrity, and by Maverick, he sure as hell did. I and everyone else in my extended family left the theater not hating ourselves.

You see, Cruise might not make as many gems as Tom Hanks or deliver as many thoughtful performances as Philip Seymour Hoffman, but he is a goddamn virtuoso at making everything he’s in better. Jack Reacher would have been needlessly complicated and boring without him. Instead, it’s needlessly complicated and pretty damn fun. Rock Of Ages? My biggest complaint is that movie doesn’t have enough Stacee Jaxx. I still have no idea what the hell the point of Vanilla Sky was, but that doesn’t mean I don’t watch it whenever it’s on TV. I have no idea whether Cruise’s upcoming science fiction, video game-esque Groundhog Day inspired event film Edge of Tomorrow will be great when it’s released next year, but I can promise you it won’t suck.

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