The Guardian‘s Joe Queenan is brutally writing off Scarlett Johansson…dissing, dismissing…tossing her onto the slag heap. “Somewhere along the line” — right after Lost in Translation, he means — “people who should have known better began to cast Johansson in roles for which she was not suited. And once the actress was asked to play anyone other than a 20-something Yank born and raised on the east coast in the waning years of the 20th century, it became apparent that she wasn’t much of an actress.
“Listless and vacant in The Girl With The Pearl Earring, Johansson was hopelessly miscast as an action babe in The Island, passive and useless in Woody Allen‘s Match Point” — not true at all! Johansson is almost Brando-esque in that film –“thoroughly implausible in Allen’s wretched Scoop, ridiculously out of her league as a postwar vamp in Brian de Palma‘s abysmal The Black Dahlia, and now entirely extraneous as a duplicitous magician’s assistant in The Prestige.
“Basically, her acting repertory consists of staring intently at the person she is speaking to, keeping her lips spread apart, and hoping no one will notice that she is no threat to Meryl Streep, and not all that much of a threat to Hilary Duff. Increasingly, the very fact that Johansson is in a film suggests that it will not make very much money, not be any good, or both. Because Johansson has made so many movies in such a short period of time, and because most of them have been so bad, and because several of these movies have been outright disasters at the box office, it’s starting to look like the actress is the kiss of death.”