Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Great (film) Debates vol. 9

Last week we proved that villains are indeed popular, but what about heroes? Can they get some love too?

Who is your favorite film hero?



Panelist: AndrewPrice

There are so many good choices like Indiana Jones, Dirty Harry, James Bond, etc. etc., but I'm going the unexpected route and I'm picking Kurt Russell as Jack Burton in Big Trouble In Little China. Why? Because he's great. He's everything a hero should never be -- inept, arrogant, self-aggrandizing, a goofball, unappealing, and downright stupid -- yet he still manages to be an extremely likable hero. Who else, but Kurt Russell, could carry off the line: "Everybody relax, I'm here."?

Panelist: ScottDS

Indiana Jones. George Lucas and Steven Spielberg were inspired by the films, comics, and adventure serials of their youth and created one of modern day cinema's coolest action heroes: Indiana Jones, professor of archeology and expert in rare antiquities. As smart and strong as he is, he's no superman. He's fallible, has a strained relationship with his father, and is a bit of a cynic. But he's also an undeniable force for good, a bit of a romantic, intensely loyal, patriotic, and always does the right thing. And like many classic heroes, he is never without his trademark accoutrements: leather jacket and fedora with bullwhip and pistol. Despite the quality of the last film, I was heartened to see a new generation of kids become fans. "I hate snakes, Jock! I hate 'em!" (Honorable mention: John McClane [Bruce Willis] in the Die Hard films.)

Panelist: Tennessee Jed

Dirty Harry, because Sherlock Holmes and James Bond are really not film heroes, but book heroes. Also, James T. Kirk is really a television character. All four probably are my favorites, but Harry Callahan is an authentic film hero. Sometimes a hero has got to know his own limitations.

Panelist: T-Rav

I'll have to go with Indiana Jones. There's just so much about him that's cool, although I think his image may owe more to the theme music than to any other element. Plus, he's fighting Nazis and evil Indian human-sacrificers, so you can't not root for him. (By the way, Temple of Doom was too a good Indy movie, and I will fight anyone who says otherwise.)


Comments? Thoughts? What would you choose and why?

83 comments:

ScottDS said...

Wow, two mentions of Indy! If I recall, he was #2 on the AFI's list of heroes with Atticus Finch coming in at #1. When asked, Harrison Ford said he was quite pleased with the ranking.

Once again, I agree with T-Rav on his opinion of Temple of Doom. Which reminds me, we need an official clubhouse of some kind, with a sign on the front: "No haters allowed!" :-)

As for me, I was tempted to choose Captain Kirk but, like Jed says, he's a TV hero who segued into movies.

Incidentally, for those of you who started reading John Nolte's stuff on BH, his old web handle was in fact "Dirty Harry" and many of us came to BH from his old eponymous (and better IMHO) blog, Dirty Harry's Place. And oddly, I find myself quoting "A man's gotta know his limitations" more so than his other iconic lines.

I saw all five DH films for the first time a year or two ago when they came out on Blu-Ray. Next to the original, the fourth film (Sudden Impact) was my favorite of the sequels.

T-Rav said...

Hmmm...knew I should have gone with a less obvious answer. But never mind, I stand by it :-)

Can't say I dispute the AFI ranking, though. Atticus Finch is a great character.

Scott, I think we also need a camera out front to ID Andrew and any other naysayers who come prowling. Maybe get a few surviving Thuggies to teach them a few manners or something ;-)

ScottDS said...

Ha!! I know what we need: a moat and a drawbridge.

On another note, Dirty Harry is on Netflix streaming so I decided to watch it right now. That's right, I'm not giving up on Netflix just yet - I'm sticking with it. But I did downgrade to streaming-only.

I had forgotten about the dialogue with the mayor that was later parodied in The Naked Gun:

(paraphrased from memory)
"I don't want any more trouble like you had last year on the south side. That's my policy."
"When I see five weirdos in togas stabbing a guy in full view of a hundred people, I shoot the bastards. That's my policy."
"That was a Shakespeare in the Park production of Julius Caesar, you moron!"

Dean_L said...

Aside from all the obvious ones like Indiana Jones and I like Andrew's choice of Jack Burton in Big Trouble in Little China. Another one I'd consider is Captain Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean. He's got a lot of the same qualities as Jack Burton.

Some more good throwback ones are Ellen Ripley from Aliens, Both Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and Jefferson Smith as portrayed by Jimmy Stewart.

The other end of the spectrum is the wooden and flat Neo from The Matrix. It fit the movie but it did nothing to make the character an endearing and likable guy. His excitement factor is based simply on the coolness of what he can do. If you are going for that, Superman is unbeatable but it doesn't make him the most engaging movie hero.

kristina said...

gah, questions like these are torture for indecisive folks like me. Agreed on both Indy and Dirty Harry (I read Nolte back at his DH blog too!). Christopher Reeve as Superman. Errol Flynn's Robin Hood. Gary Cooper as Sergeant York. Sean Connery's Bond.

you need a password,like swordfish. or something. anyway please leave the drawbridge low enough i can come back if i remember anyone else worth mentioning. Open that bridge, varmit! Open it, I say!

Floyd R. Turbo said...

@Scott... yes DH's Place was a much much much better blog, but I understand Nolte has to eat. :-)

Hero:

Ben Hur -- he thinks he's on one quest and finds out his goal wasn't really what he thought it was or even what he needed.

Marlin from Finding Nemo... everyday schmoe will do WHATEVER it takes to find his son.

Anthony Hopkins as Charles in The Edge... "I'm gonna kill the mother f***er!"

ScottDS said...

Kristina -

If it makes you feel any better, I have plenty of indecisive moments but with some of these questions, the answers just pop in there!

Good call on "swordfish" as a password. That's actually been my standard go-to password ever since I saw the Marx Brothers film Horse Feathers when I was little. (It was a password for a speakeasy.)

And to the room -

I don't know why it never occured to me to use Superman as an asnwer. Maybe because he started in the comics... maybe because, like Holmes and Bond, he's been portrayed by many different actors over the years across a wide variety of media. I wonder if it's easier to go with a character who was portrayed by the same actor.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, Yes, there's a lot of Indiana Jones in the answers! LOL!

On the Dirty Harry films, the first is my favorite and then Magnum Force is a close second. After that come the rest.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, Atticus Finch strikes me as a political choice, not a film-based choice. Sure, it's a great story, but if you asked average people to name their top 10 heroes, I really doubt his name would come up. I think people would instead gravitate towards the Indiana Jones and Supermans.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott and T-Rav, I stand by my hate for Temple of Doom! Mwooo ha ha ha ha!

That was a great moment in the Naked Gun. :)

AndrewPrice said...

Dean, I agree. Neo is a cool hero entirely because he can do cool things in a very hip movie. If you took that character and put him in another film, he would be a dud.

I considered Jack Sparrow. I think he's great! I hadn't thought of the comparison to Burton, but they do have very similar traits, don't they?

Good call with Ripley! Especially in the first two films she was great.

AndrewPrice said...

kristina, Don't worry about the password, they're just upset that I don't like Temple of Doom. Nobody needs to lock any doors. LOL!

Nice choices! I loved Flynn's Robin Hood! And Connery is just incredible as Bond -- absolutely compelling! York is one of the most likable characters to ever hit the screen. In many ways, he kind of defines the ideal American.

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, I hadn't thought about Ben Hur -- good call! I must have watched that film a dozen times as a kid. Heston is one of those guys you just can't help but like no matter what movie he's in, and that was a great movie!

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, Good question. Maybe we need to associate with both the actor and the character? Would Indiana Jones have been as cool if wasn't played by Harrison Ford? Good question.

LawHawkRFD said...

I gotta go with Dirty Harry. The movies were entertaining, without being pure "revenge movies" like the Death Wish series. For me, it was also a reflection of real life in San Francisco. The SFPD became ever-more politicized and politically-correct as the city government moved to the left, treating criminals as victims of society. Harry had a pretty clear vision of right and wrong, black and white, and was living out his career in a sea of grays.

BevfromNYC said...

Andrew: maybe they DO need the drawbridge and password. I agree that Temple of Doom was dreadful. Does two make a "angry mob"?

Take THAT, T-Rav! {{{thwap}}}

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, At some point, I'm going to break down Dirty Harry and explain why it's not a revenge film like people think and why it truly is a conservative film.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, Yeah, I think two can be considered an angry mob if they're carrying pitchforks. Of course that means we should change the name of that painting from "American Gothic" to "Non-angry Mob." ;-)

As for T-Rav and Scott and their Temple of Doom club... let's get 'em!!

Just kidding. We wouldn't do that to our friends.

BevfromNYC said...

Well, Andrew, I guess I don't have any room to talk. I liked "Howard the Duck". I don't know exactly why... so Scott is safe for now. BUT I just can't let T=Rav off the hook just yet...

DUQ said...

Han Solo. Yes, another Harrison Ford, but I choose Han Solo.

I also like Westley from Princess Bride.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, It's no crime (at least in 39 states) to like Howard the Duck! ;-)

Yeah, you never want to let T-Rav off the hook. LOL!

Here's another I thought about -- Corbin Dallas from Fifth Element.

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, I love that movie, though I think Indigo steals the whole film. "You killed my father. . . prepare to die."

BevfromNYC said...

Yeah...Bruce Willis as John McClane in the Die Hard series...

AndrewPrice said...

You know what's kind of interesting, is that no one has yet named any of the muscle guys like Arnold and Stalone. Maybe heroism is indeed within the character and not the physique?

kristina said...

swordfish.

I am ashamed to have neglected my own gender and so I return to name some women, along with Sigourney Weaver's Ripley, there should be Linda Hamilton in Terminator, and to me Greer Garson as Mrs. Miniver has the ultimate "titanium spine".

I never even really gave it much thought before but now I see that for the ladies it's a little tougher to pick if you go back beyond the straight ahead action movies, because the idea of heroism was tied very closely to traditional female roles, and the times they lived in. Back in the depression era, they kept redoing the Madame X type plot in tons of movies, and it was always the height of female heroism to sacrifice everything to give the child a better life. That seems to be the prevailing definition until the war when they got into the battlefield nurses/ spies/ homefront roles. No less heroic, though, just possibly less obvious and less respected by teh modrens.

BevfromNYC said...

Kristina - Melanie Wilkes!!

Andrew - you knew GWTW would eventually come up...;-)

AndrewPrice said...

swordfish! LOL!

Heroines are harder because Hollywood doesn't do nearly as good a job writing for heroines as they do for hero.

That said, my personal favorite is Elisabeth Shue in Adventures In Babysitting.

I also like Ripley a lot and Sandra Bullock in Speed and The Blind Side.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I should have known it would! So let me add Scarlett O'Hara... "As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again."

T-Rav said...

Dean, Jack Sparrow is a good candidate for film hero, except that the brilliance and sheer fun of "Curse of the Black Pearl" (the original) has been so undercut by the complicated and confusing sequels. They really weakened my liking for the first movie, and I think that's the case for a lot of people as well.

Floyd, I hadn't thought of Marlin, but you're right. I just watched that the other day, and he is a very relatable hero, albeit not of the swashbuckling variety.

T-Rav said...

Dear BevinNYC:

Be advised, I have a shotgun and a whole litter of newborn kittens, and I am not afraid to use either. This is your only warning.

BevfromNYC said...

Dear T=Rav: You may have kittens and a shotgun, but I have the element of surprise. Oooh, what was that sound outside?? Did you see a shadow on the wall or was that just your immagination? Nope that wasn't me...yet. Bwaahahahahaha.

Ed said...

No Tom Cruise either. I guess this crowd isn't what Hollywood thinks is normal?

In terms of heroes, no list is complete without John Wayne in anything!

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, Great call -- John Wayne! :-)

Yeah, our crowd doesn't seem to be Hollywood's current target market. But that's probably what makes everything around here such fun.

CrisD said...

As a female, I do second (or third)--Ripley but my heart is with Linda Hamilton's Sarah Conner in T2. I like Arnold for hero in T2. (I would go back and give hin vilian for the first Terminator.)

In the family, we discussed and agree on Sean Connery in Bond-boys say its "From Russia with Love" because of a line about something being just right for him--I like it because he turned the Russia female Russian spy.

AndrewPrice said...

CrisD, From Russia With Love is my favorite Bond as well. Everything about that film is right. :)

One of the things I really liked about Hamilton in T2 was that she occasionally went over-the-top crazy as well. I thought it was hilarious every time her son had to calm her down and get her back on track.

Joel Farnham said...

Malcolm Reynolds of Serenity. He was so heroic he led heroes to Miranda through Reaver's territory and back again.

T-Rav said...

Nyah nyah, you don't scare me Bev. I'm here in the Temple of Doom clubhouse, with our moat and our drawbridge and stuff, and all those crocodiles at the bottom. So make my day ;-)

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, Mal is great! He's a real throwback to heroes of old -- moral, strong and courageous. I wish they hadn't canceled that series -- or that the movie made more money.

T-Rav said...

Andrew and CrisD, Sarah Connor is a pretty good choice as well. I liked that T2 did have that quiet sub-plot of her reconnecting with her son; it gave an emotional depth to the film rather than simply being one Terminator battle after another. One of many reasons why I think T2 far surpassed even the original, as good as that was (not to mention the disappointing sequels).

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, You Doom clubbers are insane! LOL! Maybe at some point you (or Scott or both) can write up a review of why you liked that film?

T-Rav said...

Andrew, hmmmm. Not a bad idea. Let me get back to you on that.

But meanwhile, as a peace offering, let me just say that, while I do really like Temple of Doom, it is not in fact my favorite of the three (because remember, there are only three Indy movies, despite rumors to the contrary). That honor will always go to Raiders of the Lost Ark.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, You are correct, there are only three Indiana Jones films. I don't know why people keep saying there's a fourth?

I'm glad you're up to the challenge! Take your time! :)

BevfromNYC said...

What about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull? Doesn't that constitute the 4th? Though it was pretty awful...but not as bad as Temple of Doom. It's that horrible Kate Spielberg...

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, No... don't!! Ixnay on the rystal ullskray.... or people will get upset. Humanity is trying to blot that movie out of our memories

Koshcat said...

Love the choices and the Temple of Doom was the weakest of the three by alot. I like Maximus in The Gladiator. regular guy took on an emperor for the good of the people. A close second would William Wallace.

AndrewPrice said...

Koshcat, Good call! I'm actually a Russell Crowe fan, though that doesn't seem to be a popular stance anymore, and I think Gladiator was his best role!

Wallace is a good choice too. And along similar lines, I liked Liam Neeson a lot as Robert MacGregor in Rob Roy.

ScottDS said...

I asked a friend of mine the hero question and his answer was the Terminator as seen in the second film. "If I was a kid and I needed someone to protect me at all costs, I'd want him!"

As for Temple of Doom, I suppose it merits further discussion later. But for me, it's beautifully shot**, features some great visual effects and one of John William's best scores, and the first twenty minutes are just killer: Anything Goes in Mandarin followed by a ridiculous melee followed by a car chase followed by a plane escape via raft.

The film never lets up for a second and does a great job of paying homage to all the cheesy pulp/jungle adventures that came before it. I've seen it argued elsewhere that, of all four films, Doom might be the most true to its source material.

**Nerd trivia: Indy 1-3 director of photography Doug Slocombe, unlike his peers, never used a light meter. He would hold up his hand and judge the amount of light based on the shadow his thumb cast on his hand. That is simply genius.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, You don't think it crossed over into ridiculousness too often?

P.S. Impressive nerd trivia! LOL!

ScottDS said...

In a way, the whole movie is an exercise in ridiculousness. BUT I think there's a difference between a movie that starts off relatively realistic and gets ridiculous (often to its detriment) and a movie that simply starts off ridiculous and doesn't stop. (My best example of this is The Blues Brothers - they jump a drawbridge in the first five minutes and you know you're in for a crazy ride.)

And I'm sure nostalgia is playing a part here, too, but that also begs the question: is this film any more or less ridiculous than Crystal Skull? Or do we accept it because it's simply a better made film?

BevfromNYC said...

But Scott...Kate Capshaw. All I can do is thank the acting gods that Spielberg married her and saved us from her acting...

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I definitely see your point. BUT here's my problem with that argument. This is a sequel to a very non-ridiculous film. Raiders set the tone and this film violated it. Maybe in isolation Doom is an ok film, but it has a heritage that is part of the deal.

And yeah, this was definitely a better made movie than Crystal Skull. CS was a film that lacked a single internal tone and which seemed to lack a genuine plot until the last few minutes. Doom definitely doesn't suffer from that. Not to mention (as I think the scriptshadow guy mentions), CS is full of characters doing nonsense things until the plot is ready to move on. It's just a horrid bit of film making. Doom is nowhere near as flawed.

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, I'm thinking you're not a Kate Capshaw fan? But then. . . who is?

ScottDS said...

Bev -

What can I say? She doesn't bother me. She's might be annoying but then she gets covered with bugs, so you can't say she doesn't get her just desserts.

Frank Darabont's unused draft of Crystal Skull had Marion asking Indy: "What happened to that singer you used to go out with?"
Indy: "Willie? She ran away to Hollywood and married some big-shot director."

Man, I wish they had kept that line!


Andrew - I see your point and, yes, for the purposes of this discussion, I was considering Doom in isolation.

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, That would have been funny! LOL!

By the way, I do see your point about Doom. Taken in isolation it's kind of an homage to all the whacky adventure films of the 1930s.

I'll wait to see what T-Rav comes up with before burning my copy. ;)

T-Rav said...

Fun fact--Before marrying Spielberg (or maybe it was after, I forget), Kate Capshaw was married to a guy who grew up 15 miles away from my hometown. True story--it doesn't really matter, but I like to claim it anyway.

Interestingly, unlike Scott, I think the first few minutes of Doom are actually the weakest. That "Anything Goes" number? What was the point of that? I don't hate it, exactly, but I don't see why it's relevant either.

The rest of it, though, I think is very good and entertaining, if not quite awesome. It's just a straightforward plot: adventurer, sidekick, and pretty lady in an exotic environment, wind up fighting some jackass who enslaves children and commits human sacrifices (but then who doesn't?), wind up saving the day, etc. And you can't deny that there are some very memorable scenes. Maybe it isn't four stars, but taken as a whole, I don't see why people should dislike it.

Floyd R. Turbo said...

Other unusual heroes...

Andy Dufresne in Shawshank Redemption... he refuses to give up his humanity in the face of grave injustice and saves his friend Red in the end.

Female hero: Helen Parr -- The Incredibles

More traditional: Leonidas "300" and Maximus in Gladiator

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, It's too bad you didn't grow up next door to George Lucas's house. We could arrange a sleepover and a protest! :)

I'd still like to see you and/or Scott put together a case for the movie. You might just plant the seed that gets people to re-evaluate the film?!

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, I should watch The Incredibles again. I know a lot of conservatives love that film, but I don't remember much about it. I think I was doing something like writing a brief while watching it.

ScottDS said...

Re: Anything Goes, I guess I'm just a sucker for old-fashioned musical numbers. :-) My favorite scene from Spielberg's 1941 is the jitterbug contest.

As far as Doom is concerned, some directors simply like indulging themselves more than others! I almost miss that Spielberg more than the auto-pilot Spielberg we have now. Of course, Spielberg on auto-pilot is still better than most directors.


Andrew -

I've read defenses of the film elsewhere but honestly, I love the first three films equally, so for me, Doom is just as good as Raiders. Maybe I'll put something together one day. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I look forward to whatever you can put together! :)

Joel Farnham said...

I was disappointed in 'Temple of Doom because it was not as good as Raiders of the Lost Ark. We didn't learn anything new about Indiana Jones.

I was happier about Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade because of the short story at the first. It is where we learn about how Indiana got the cut on his chin. How he started to hate snakes. Spielberg showed Indy's strained relationship with is his father. It even shows where he gets his fedora. :-)

By comparison, 'Temple of Doom is dull in that you could almost replace Indiana Jones with any Hero. You could have changed a few things and Rick O'Connell (The Mummy 1999) could have been getting the mystical glowing stones. You could even put in "Smoking" Joe Gunn (The Hard Way 1991) and not have lost a single thing. We never know what happened to Short Round. We already know what happened to the slu...uh, other one.

As a stand-a-lone movie, Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom holds up. It would have gone perfectly with the Saturday Afternoon Matinee Movies that Spielberg fell in love with and wanted to recreate.

T-Rav said...

Andrew, if I lived next to George Lucas' house, I would have been studying more carefully how to make Molotov cocktails. Er...did I say that out loud? When I say "Molotov cocktails," I mean this new kind of alcoholic beverage that I want to learn how to make so I can take it over to George and break the ice with him, because I'd really like to meet a filmmaker in person some day. Yeah, that's it.

No promises. I'll see what I can do.

Meanwhile, to second Floyd, you should really watch The Incredibles. I think you'd enjoy it.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, That's a really good point and I used to feel that way about James Bond films in the 1990s -- there was nothing "James Bond" about them.... you could have stuck in any hero and made the same film.

I liked Raiders best, but I agree that Crusade was really neat because of all the things you do learn about Jones.

In terms of Doom, I can see where it stands up on it's own against most of what's out there. But when it became an Indiana Jones story, maybe it just took on expectations that were too high?

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, And I would help you serve Mr. Lucas this new fangled drink! ;)

I will look for the Incredibles and give it another shot.

98ZJUSMC said...

LOL @ Andrew!

Jack Burton. Who?
God, I love that movie.

The trick is to look stupid.

He does.

Nope for me it's:

RADM Rockwell Torrey. In Harm's Way.

rlaWTX said...

I like Doom OK, but it's way too gross!!

John McClane!!!!!
Sarah Connor (T2)
Ripley - eh... love Aliens, but I like Cpl Hicks better...
Indiana Jones! & Han Solo!
yep, it's a tie between Westley & Inigo Montoya in Princess Bride...

Jack Ryan - Hunt for Red October was the best one, I think, but I love Jack from the books...

Never got into the Dirty Harry movies - my dad loved 'em... Not a DH, but I always liked "The Gauntlet"! "the love of Jesus in my pretty blue eyes" and the house!!!! (I also think that I have only seen the "cut for TV in the 80s" version- my Baptist preacher dad loved the TV versions! - I caught part of the regular one and was a tad surprised by the language)

rlaWTX said...

(haven't liked J Depp since 21 Jump Street - and Sparrow creeps me out!)

AndrewPrice said...

98ZJUSMC, Big Trouble is an awesome movie! I love it. And you're right, the trick is to look stupid! LOL!

In Harm's Way was a great film too!

AndrewPrice said...

rlaWTX, I thought The Gauntlet was great! I actually have a hard time not seeing that as a Dirty Harry film -- they're so similar in style.

Great list! I lean toward Indigo because he was just such a great character.

I have to say though that I do like Depp a lot, he always impresses me.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Great list of heroes!

I'll go waaay back to 1926:

Lon Cheney as the Marine sarge in Tell It To The Marines.

One of my favorite silent flicks. One of my fave flicks period, actually.

Lon Cheney was famous for being the Werewolf but this was one of his best roles bar none.

In fact, he portrayed a Marine DI and sarge so well that he was given the honor of honorary Marine by the Marine Corps!
First actor to receive that title too.

He also became lifelong friends with the Marine General they brought on as a consultant (I sure wish more film makers would use real Marines, Sailors, Soldiers and Airmen as consultants before making military fims).

Playing catch up. I had a major computer crash. Glad to be back, I was going into DT's, LOL.

AndrewPrice said...

USS Ben, I'm glad you're back! We honestly did miss your input! :)

I haven't seen Tell It To The Marines as I've never been a big silent movie fan and so haven't sought them out. So I have to say that I know Chaney best for being the Werewolf.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Thanks Andrew! I really missed you guys! Even T-Rav, but don't tell him that.
Oops. Mispelled Chaney. Thanks for the correction.

I'm not a huge silent film fan either, but occasionally I'll watch one if it catches my interest and this one sure did.

A lot of critics hail Sunset as one of the best silent films and it is good (I watched it to see what the hubub was all about).

But...I consider Tell It To The Marines to be better (I admit I'm also biased).
Not only is it a great story with great acting and a great score, but it's also accurate which is the icing on the cake.

When I do watch silent films it's a lot like watching foreign films that ain't dubbed.
Needless to say I was impressed with Chaney's work and I'll be on the lookout for more of Chaney's films, silent or not. :^)

AndrewPrice said...

USS Ben, Don't worry, I won't tell T-Rav! LOL! In any event, welcome back!

On silent films, I've seen a handful, but not a ton. My favorite is probably Metropolis, which was pretty interesting. I've seen some Charlie Chaplin stuff too because I wanted to see who he was. It's good, but it's just not something I really care for. I'm not a big fan of really early black and white either -- right as sound was beginning. There's just something about the film speed and the acting techniques that don't work for me.

Outlaw13 said...

John Wayne as CPT Nathan Brittles in She Wore A Yellow Ribbon. There's a scene towards the end where his character is retiring from the Army that is just awesome.

Val Kilmer as Doc and Kurt Russel as Wyatt in Tombstone, "I'm your huckleberry!" Damn, I could watch that movie almost every day of the week.

The only good thing about Temple of Doom is that it gave us Short Round, so years later we could make a junior pilot in my unit who was half Korean say, "No time for love Doctor Jones." whenever we wanted, Good times.

AndrewPrice said...

Outlaw, Good times indeed! LOL!

Tombstone is a great movie! I love that one.

98ZJUSMC said...

Val Kilmer as Doc and Kurt Russel as Wyatt in Tombstone, "I'm your huckleberry!" Damn, I could watch that movie almost every day of the week.

I shouldn't like that movie, but I do. I always catch it when it's on. Good preformances and a very decent cast.

AndrewPrice said...

98ZJUSMC, I wasn't expecting much the first time I saw it because I was told it was fluff. But it's got real staying power.

TJ said...

I'm a little late to the party, but I also really like Tombstone - I thought Val Kilmer was awesome in that role!

I love westerns and another pair of heroes that I like a lot are Boss Spearman & Charley Wait (Robert Duvall & Kevin Costner) in Open Range.

Of course, John Wayne is one of my favorite cowboy heroes.

AndrewPrice said...

TJ, That's probably my favorite role for Kilmer.

Open Range is great too!

Outlaw13 said...

For me, Kurt Russell's speech in Tombstone at the train station where he tells Ike that "hell's coming", raises the hair on the back of my neck almost every-time.

AndrewPrice said...

Outlaw, That is a great speech. Very determined!

GypsyTyger said...

I apologize for getting into this so late but I just discovered this site yesterday! The greatest hero in film is Rocky Balboa. If you were raised the way that I was raised , Rocky had all of the ideal masculine traits.He could fight,but he could walk away.He had confidence in himself,but he was human and vulnerable.He always gave Paulie room to be a jackass to him because that was just the way Paulie was,but he never let anybody be rude to Adrian.Remember the scene in Rocky Balboa where he and Marie are getting in the van with the loud mouth jeering at them? If the man had just been insulting him he would have just driven away.He got back out and confronted the guy because the guy had insulted Marie.He had chivalry,he had humility,he had courage and when it came to go time he always came through. Rocky Balboa is the greatest hero in film history.

AndrewPrice said...

GypsyTyger, No problem! New people are finding us all the time. :)

I think you make a great point about Rocky. He's a very complex hero in ways that the stereotype based around him just being "a dumb boxer" really doesn't fairly address. He is a good deal smarter than he comes across and has a very good sense of human nature, as you point out. He also has exactly what you say -- a way to respect people on their own terms, which I think stands out nicely when compared to the generic "everybody's the same/one size fits all" world Hollywood so often portrays for heroes.

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