Reeves was soon drawn to science fiction roles, appearing in Chain Reaction (1996) with co-stars Morgan Freeman, Rachel Weisz, Fred Ward, Kevin Dunn and Brian Cox. He plays a researcher of a green energy project, who has to go on the run when he is framed for murder. Chain Reaction was not a critical success and received mostly negative reviews; film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gave it a rating of 16% and described it as "a man-on-the-run thriller that mostly sticks to generic formula". Reeves' film choices after Chain Reaction were also critical disappointments. He starred in the independent crime comedy Feeling Minnesota (1996), with Vincent D'Onofrio and Cameron Diaz, which was described as "shoddily assembled, and fundamentally miscast" by Rotten Tomatoes. That same year, he turned down an offer to star in Speed 2: Cruise Control, despite being offered a salary of $12 million. According to Reeves, this decision caused 20th Century Fox to sever ties with him for a decade. Instead, Reeves toured with his band Dogstar, and appeared in the drama film The Last Time I Committed Suicide (1997), based on a 1950 letter written by Neal Cassady to Jack Kerouac. In a scathing review of Reeves' performance, Paul Tatara of CNN called him "void of talent ... here he is again, reciting his lines as if they're non-related words strung together as a memory exercise".
Reeves made a foray into television films in 1986, including NBC's Babes in Toyland, Act of Vengeance and Brotherhood of Justice. He made his first motion picture appearances in Peter Markle's Youngblood (1986), in which he played a goalkeeper, and in the low-budget romantic drama, Flying. He was cast as Matt in River's Edge, a crime drama about a group of high school friends dealing with a murder case, loosely based on the 1981 murder of Marcy Renee Conrad. The film premiered in 1986 at the Toronto International Film Festival to a largely positive response. Janet Maslin of The New York Times describes the performances of the young cast as "natural and credible", with Reeves being described as "affecting and sympathetic".More Info
In 1984, Reeves was a correspondent for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) youth television program Going Great. That same year, he made his acting debut in an episode of the television series, called Hangin' In. In 1985, he played Mercutio in a stage production of Romeo and Juliet at the Leah Posluns Theatre in North York, Ontario. He made further appearances on stage, including Brad Fraser's cult hit Wolfboy in Toronto. He also appeared in a Coca-Cola commercial, and in 1985, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) coming-of-age, short film One Step Away.More Info
Reeves starred alongside Patrick Swayze, Lori Petty and Gary Busey in the action thriller Point Break (1991), directed by Kathryn Bigelow. He plays an undercover FBI agent tasked with investigating the identities of a group of bank robbers. To prepare for the film, Reeves and his co-stars took surfing lessons with professional surfer Dennis Jarvis in Hawaii. Reeves had never surfed before. Upon its release, Point Break was generally well-received, and a commercial success, earning $83.5 million at the box office. Reeves' performance was praised by The New York Times for "considerable discipline and range", adding, "He moves easily between the buttoned-down demeanor that suits a police procedural story and the loose-jointed manner of his comic roles". Writing for The Washington Post, Hal Hinson called Reeves the "perfect choice" and praised the surfing scenes, but opined "the filmmakers have their characters make the most ludicrously illogical choices imaginable". At the 1992 MTV Movie Awards, Reeves won the Most Desirable Male award.More Info
Towards the end of the 1980s, Reeves starred in several dramas aimed at teen audiences, including as the lead in The Night Before (1988), a comedy starring opposite Lori Loughlin, The Prince of Pennsylvania (1988) and Permanent Record (1988). Although the latter received mixed reviews, Variety praised Reeves' performance, "which opens up nicely as the drama progresses". His other acting efforts included a supporting role in Dangerous Liaisons (1988), which earned seven nominations at the 61st Academy Awards, winning three: Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Costume Design, and Best Production Design. This was followed by Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989), in which he portrays a slacker who travels through time with a friend (portrayed by Alex Winter), to assemble historical figures for a school presentation. The film was generally well-received by critics and grossed $40.5 million at the worldwide box office. Film review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 79% approval rating with the critical consensus: "Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter are just charming, goofy, and silly enough to make this fluffy time-travel Adventure work".More Info
Keanu Charles Reeves was born in Beirut, Lebanon, on September 2, 1964, the son of Patricia (née Taylor), a costume designer and performer, and Samuel Nowlin Reeves Jr. His mother is English, originating from Essex. His father is from Hawaii, and is of Chinese, English, Irish, Native Hawaiian, and Portuguese descent. His father earned a GED while serving time in prison for selling heroin at Hilo International Airport. His mother was working in Beirut when she met his father, who abandoned his wife and family when Reeves was three years old. Reeves last met his father on the island of Kauai when he was 13.More Info
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