It's full of little moments and mannerisms that paint a portrait of a man who has internalized violence in ways even he doesn't fully understand. And it's all done in a restrained manner that's entirely unlike the man-turned-meme that modern Hollywood has decided Busey is.
In The Rock, A Michael Bay Supporting Character Actually Feels Like a Real Person
Modern Michael Bay films are loaded with an insane amount of confusing action, wanton destruction, and broad emotional beats that usually boil down to "Bummed that the bad guy isn't dead yet" and "Elated that the bad guy is finally dead." That's why Bay's 1996 film The Rock feels like a straight-up masterpiece in comparison. Coherent direction! Characters who suffer from occasional inner turmoil! It's like a real movie, y'all.
The Rock focuses on rogue general Francis Hummel and his compatriots taking over Alcatraz and holding 81 tourists hostage for $100 million. If the ransom isn't paid, they threaten to unleash rockets loaded with deadly nerve gas on San Francisco. Since it's an R-rated action film directed by Michael Bay, things go sideways for Hummel and his mercenaries, as they are forced to deal with Nicolas Cage and Sean Connery. And when Hummel realizes the government has called his bluff (he never planned on using the missiles), his loose cannon henchmen realize they won't be receiving the money he promised.
The ensuing argument between the "good bad guys" (Hummel and his second-in-command, Major Baxter) and the "bad bad guys" (Captain Darrow and Captain Frye) leads to a Leone-esque standoff. Sergeant Crisp (Bokeem Woodbine), who has been with Hummel since Desert Storm, stands out. He's clearly annoyed he won't be getting any money, but he also doesn't want to kill civilians or hurt his mentor.