James McAvoy

James McAvoy is a First Class X-Man

James McAvoy is a First Class X-Man

James McAvoy is a favorite of Sundance’s own guiding light Robert Redford, who cast him in the Civil War drama The Conspirator. Redford clearly has great taste in actors (and bloggers, too, lol).

At a TimesTalk the other evening in Times Square, McAvoy charmed the audience with his thick Scottish accent and self-effacing personality, proving why he’s become one of today’s go-to actors most worth going to.

Asked if he watches American Idol, McAvoy said, “It’s like cocaine to me. I don’t know how to kick the habit.”

Pause. “Actually, I don’t know who the people are! I’m sure they’re very good.”

The audience already wanted to eat the guy up. And they loved him even more when he gave a spiel about how important American culture is, then laughed and said, “That sounded so fake!”

But his takes on his diverse filmography were very real. Here are the highlights:

THE LAST STATION

THE LAST STATION

Anton Chekhov’s novella “My Life” reads like the first half of Leo Tolstoy’s life. A socially rebellious youth from a wealthy family who rejects the privileges of his class, denounces his education and sets out to make a life for himself amongst the working people. THE LAST STATION, however, is concerned only with the great man’s final days, more concerned, perhaps, than the great man himself. The film, like the ardent young Tolstoyans who hang on his every word, seeks to preserve his legacy even when Tolstoy (Christopher Plummer) isn’t so sure what that is. Like Christians who follow the Bible to the letter, he is disappointed, it seems, or perhaps bewildered that his friends and believers obey ideals he once advocated for like abstinence, for example, when he himself doesn’t hesitate to make love to his wife.