In the name of research, I rented the Disney 'based on a true story' film "The Greatest Game Ever Played". It's the story of a young golfer who plays a truly great game and makes history.
The film was messy and nothing special, but (and pardon the pun here) it may just be the movie that chipped Shia LaBeouf out of 'goofy sidekick' territory. Remember him in Constantine, I, Robot, Charlies Angels: Full Throttle? I never thought I'd say this, but thank goodness for golf.
Now before all that 'comic relief' crap there was Holes, another Disney flick but a far superior one. I remember I was on a terrible first and last date and by the end of that movie I forgot the guy was even there. The only guy I cared about was the one on the screen, the one with the smoking gaze burning through unbelievable green eyes, hooded by those fantastic eyebrows. I thought to myself, oh dear...now this kid has it. (No, not in a pervy way...in a cinematic knowing kinda way)
I was surprised as I had been a fan of his since his turn with Disney yet again on the television series, Even Stevens. Yes he had the comedy down, you'd think his face suits this genre the most, but I remember saying even then... I have to find out his name....that one there, he's going places.
He followed Greatest Game with Disturbia, an above average teen thriller (mind you it did have Hitchcock as a base...so that bodes well for any movie) and then all of the sudden he was the big star of TRANSFORMERS and INDIANA JONES 4. I didn't think, good for you, when I heard that news...I though finally, some justice in the world as I punched the air with my girlie fist.
In the interest of more research, I plan on renting Surf's Up (also because I've been desperate to see it since I missed out on seeing it at the movies). Shia voices the main character. When you start voicing 3D animated penguins, you know you've hit the bigtime.
And Shia, if you're reading this, if you ever do a Britney or become a Scientologist I will personally hunt you down and slap the sh*t out of you...keep the dream alive buddy.