Wavering stars -- A look at Geena Davis, Johnny Depp, and other wayward stars

By David Hochman
Updated November 01, 1996 at 05:00 AM EST

Ghost, Indecent Proposal, and A Few Good Men made nearly half a billion dollars combined, but ever since 1994’s Disclosure, she’s developed an uncanny knack for landing knee-deep in cheese (The Scarlet Letter and Striptease). The upcoming G.I. Jane sounds cool, but it doesn’t exactly scream classy. Our advice: Have Bruce call 411 to get Merchant Ivory’s number.

His hits worked because they were good scripts with pleasant ensemble casts (When Harry Met Sally…) or cute farm animals (City Slickers). But Crystal’s most innovative work was done almost 20 years ago when he played Jodie on Soap. Our advice: Do a sitcom. Prime time loves neurotic New York types who know how to kvetch about relationships.

He may be the only movie star taking roles that are too interesting. A series of sensitive guys (Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood, et al.) have made Johnny seem a tad anemic. Our advice: Get some energy — maybe even a good old-fashioned psychotic Jack Nicholson role. ”Heeeeere’s Johnny!”

She’s a diva. She’s a director. She’s a serious actress. She could be President someday. But even fans who flocked to see 1991’s The Prince of Tides may be getting tired of watching Streisand the director light herself so beatifically. (Get ready: She does it again in The Mirror Has Two Faces, opening Nov. 15.) Our advice: Lighten up. Take a pie in the face, host a couple of episodes of Regis. We miss the funny girl.

You have to give him credit. He passed on Speed 2, at least in part so he could play guitar in his rock band, Dogstar. A bad choice? Not if your last name’s Van Halen, but Reeves has stiffed in flops like Little Buddha and Chain Reaction. And since he’s acting with Al Pacino in the upcoming Devil’s Advocate, this is our advice: Skip band practice and learn a fourth facial expression.

After scoring a Best Supporting Actress Oscar (for The Accidental Tourist) and taking part in a milestone (Thelma & Louise), the talented actress decided to become… an action star? The $92 million swashbuckler Cutthroat Island, directed by husband Renny Harlin, grossed less than $10 million, and The Long Kiss Goodnight (her latest action collaboration with Harlin) isn’t exactly waking up the box office either. Our advice: Let Harlin find a new leading lady and let Susan Sarandon pick your scripts.