There are some acting couples whose on screen chemistry can’t be denied. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan (iconic), Richard Gere and Julia Roberts (classic), Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence (new wave). Those are just some the great on screen couples. Today, however, I am talking about a different kind of on screen chemistry, the Bromance. Some of you will know what I’m talking about but for those of you unaware, this is the phenomenon of two straight guys whose platonic relationship borders on the romantic. This week I list my Top Five On Screen Bromances.
5. Simon Pegg and Nick Frost
Starting the list off is this comedic duo, best known for their roles in Edgar Wright’s Cornetto Trilogy of films. Simon Pegg has become one of my favorite comedic actors over the last few years. I think he’s been a great addition to the Star Trek reboot and I thought he added just the right bit of light fare to Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011). Though I’m not a huge fan of the Cornetto Trilogy, I think Pegg and Frost’s banter in the films is excellent. They have perfect timing and work well being either the straight man to the other’s funny man, or vice versa. I’ve laughed my way through all three films thanks to them. Hot Fuzz (2007) is definitely my favorite of the three, though being a fan of zombie films, Shaun of the Dead (2004) is a very close second.
4. Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson
Technically Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson both appeared in Zoolander (2001) and Starsky & Hutch (2004) (Vaughn had cameo appearances in each) but they teamed up in Wedding Crashers (2005) for their first co-starring roles. The result was pure comedy gold. These two guys are hilarious together and I’m sure it will go down as one of the best buddy comedies of all time. They appeared again in The Internship last year, which was pleasantly surprising. It was a fairly simple, straightforward comedy and it worked because Vaughn and Wilson are a great pair. It was a much different take on the genre than Wedding Crashers, relying less on raunchy antics and more on the heartfelt storyline to create an entertaining film. It takes a couple of talented actors to make both approaches successful.
3. George Clooney and Brad Pitt
Ocean’s Eleven is one of the best remakes in recent years and it’s all due to the impeccable cast. Leading them is a pair of actors that make up a current hot Hollywood bromance. George Clooney and Brad Pitt are excellent together. Both have dramatic backgrounds but they pull off these humorous caper films perfectly. There is an unaffected air about them. They’re smooth, and they are the epitome of the Hollywood “in crowd.” They’re the guys everyone wants in their circle. It doesn’t matter that they seem to be in their own little bubble, with their inside jokes because the audience feels like they are in the know. These guys are, simply put, cool.
2. Kermit the Frog and Fozzie Bear
Another pair of Hollywood “it” guys make their way onto the list. Okay, so maybe Kermit and Fozzie aren’t exactly “it” guys but they are very much loved by audiences. The Muppets in general are lovable but there is a special bond between the frog and bear best friends. Perhaps it’s Kermit’s support of Fozzie’s, more often than not, terrible jokes that’s most endearing about their relationship. Perhaps Fozzie’s belief in Kermit’s ability to solve just about any issue is the most charming aspect. Or maybe it’s the overall good nature and wholesomeness of their friendship that inspires fans. Either way, Kermit and Fozzie, along with their other muppet friends are some of the most cheerful and charming entertainers around.
1. Robert Redford and Paul Newman
The bromance that started it all. I’m sure there were plenty of good pairings before Paul Newman and Robert Redford got together in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) but I’m not sure any of them were as epic. I mean, you’ve got the boyish good looks of a young Redford and the coolness and suave style of Newman in a cowboy film about American legends! Clooney and Pitt took their cues from this duo for sure. These were the original cool guys. They followed up Butch and Sundance with The Sting (1973), which is only slightly cooler because it features Robert Shaw. It’s just a pity they only did two films together but perhaps they realized they reached perfection, and didn’t want to tempt fate by going to the well once too often, something Pitt and Clooney could have learned from (see Ocean’s Twelve and Ocean’s Thirteen).