John Cusack's most recent big screen turn, as real-life serial killer 'Robert Hansen' in 'The Frozen Ground', sees him turn in a menacing performance, completely unrecognisable from the loveable, floppy-haired teenage sweetheart of 'Say Anything' times.
His co-star Vanessa Hudgens told HuffPostUK, "I remember him best from 'Say Anything', so it was pretty fascinating to see him like that. He told me about it before I got to be around it, but still, the first time he got into it, I remember being pretty shocked.
John Cusack with Zac Efron, Nicole Kidman and Matthew McConaughey in 'The Paperboy'
It's not the first time Cusack has disappeared completely into a character completely unlike his diffident, laid-back self, evident in an interview he gave to HuffPostUK last year concerning his labour of love 'The Raven' - all about his great creative hero, Edgar Allan Poe.
Of his rendering of Poe, Cusack said, "I tried my hardest, I came back exhausted, weighing 187 pounds, stumbling around. But we made sure to get him as complex and f***ed up as possible. It was like being on a bender. It was like being on a journey to the underworld artistically."
Which may help explain how he's managed to offer up another revelatory performance in 'The Paperboy', out today on DVD and Blu-Ray.
John Cusack in 'The Frozen Ground' - still but deadly
Even up against co-stars Nicole Kidman, Zac Efron and a newly committed Matthew McConaughey, it is still Cusack whose presence is the chilling backbone of the narrative. He is Hillary Van Wetter, a convicted murderer, whose fiancee Charlotte (Kidman) remains committed to him, reeled in by a sexual control, in between his violent an unappealing displays.
While the other characters swelter in the Miami heat and swamps, Van Wetter remains still and unpredictable, until he moves, and John Cusack is once again so bad, he's very, very good.