There have been a few letdowns (Reign of Fire, Shaft) and bumps (The Terminator: Salvation caught on tape yelling incident) in his career, yet he always manages to awe his audience by convincing you that he IS the character.
Bale's most recent act of humanity is actually what prompted me to write this. It reminded me that despite being a high profile actor, he's also a human being who can feel sympathy and pain like the rest of us. That makes him awesome.
So why else is Christian Bale awesome? Here are my top 5 favorite reasons:
5. Cool Kid in Empire of the Sun
This was one of Bale's first films. He was only 13 years old when he appeared in this 1987 Steven Spielberg directed classic. He goes from being a wealthy British schoolboy to being a prisoner of war in a Japanese internment camp. He held his hold his own against veteran and acclaimed actor John Malkovich, and even lent his sweet voice to singing in Japanese.
4. Terminator: Salvation Meltown
Yes, we all have them, but most of us are lucky enough not to have them recorded. And yes, this is full of foul language, but I have to say that I'm on Bale's side. He was having a perfect performance when the director of photography stepped into his frame. The dude is lucky that Bale simply yelled at him and didn't bat-kick him into oblivion.
3. Every scene in American Psycho
Although I love him as Batman, there is something magical about his role as Patrick Bateman in 1999's American Psycho. Despite being a deranged serial killer who hacks up prostitutes and coworkers, he somehow manages to get the viewer to feel sorry for him, and laugh at him. Yes, he has an odd obsession with Huey Lewis and the News, as well as business cards, but haven't we all at one time or another fantasized about using a chainsaw on a coworker?
2. Transformers Got Nothing on Him
Bale lost 63 pounds for his role in The Machinist in 2004 and gained 100 pounds six months later to debut his role as Batman (a.k.a. The Dark Knight). Now that is something no Transformer can do. You better Bumblebee-lieve it.
1. Being a Real Hero
Taking time to visit some of the victims from last week's Aurora, Colorado shooting incident that happened during the premiere of The Dark Knight Rises, completely on his own, definitely makes him awesome. (If you haven't heard about his visit, you can read it in the Time newsfeed.)
Even though Bale has concluded his role at Batman (or so he says), he is still awesome in my book (or comic book). I'm hoping that he continues to choose roles that test the boundaries of his body and mind. And vocal range.