Off-day Ode to James Arness

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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    mojo, how funny, i did intend on seeing the new one. I liked the first one as well. I love the Coen brothers.
     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from royf19. Show royf19's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Danny,

    I like your lists. I'd include in the movie category some of the John Wayne-John Ford pictures like Stagecoach, Fort Apache and She Wore a Yellow Ribbon and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (with James Stewart). And I'd certainly add True Grit and The Shootist.

    I'd also include the James Stewart-Anthony Mann westerns like Bend of the River, Winchester 73, The Man From Laramie, The Far Country and The Naked Spur.

    I'd include both Wayne and Stewart in any of those pictures among favorites. And I still like Eastwood in the Sergio Leone westerns.

    I'm sure there are other movies that could be included because there were a lot of great westerns from that era.



    I also agree with your point about Wayne and Reagan serving.

    Many people from that era believe that Wayne's war pictures was  more valuable for morale back home than if he was in the military. And Reagan did serve. He was a captain, I believe, and was put in the film department making propaganda films because he was near-sighted.

    Everyone had a role to play.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Well, the big difference between serving and lifting moral is putting UR azz on the front line - willing to make the supreme and ultimate sacrofice. This isn't to discount what Wayne did. There's balls...and there's balls.

    As an actor, Wayne was a "re-actor". But he worked hard at his craft. Anybody who thinks he couldn't act should see him in THE SEARCHERS. That was a great movie.

    I can't believe nobody had HIGH NOON on their best western list. That was a classic, as the clock moved in real time, building the tension. I also agree that the James Stewart westerns were terrific.

    To me, the more authentic, the better. That's why I loved GUNSMOKE. That shot of the ole' coffee pot when the credits ran at the end...Loui the town drunk...Festus not knowing how to read.

    I thought Bonanza was plastic in comparison. Mantly, who worked with Arness after Gunsmoke, also worked with Stuart Whitman in a short-lived series called CIMMARON STRIP. It ran 90 minutes, which turned the execs off, but it was a really good show. The characterization was crisp. It was different.

    Arness later did a show called McClain's Law. I think the name was derived from one of his early characters in a John Wayne film. Arness thought the world of Wayne, for giving him so many opportunities. I doubt he thought any less of him for not serving.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    I'm not sure what the average age was of WWII veterans or what the draft rules were at the time, but keep in mind that Wayne was 34 or 35 with four kids at the time of Pearl Harbor. Even for WWII, I don't think there were a lot in the service who fit that demographic, especially for draftees or enlistees.

    As for High Noon, it deserves the accolades it gets but I was never a big fan of Gary Cooper.

     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    The WWII age factor is a good point.

    I really liked Cooper. He wasn't an "in your face" type. In fact, many directors couldn't see his reactions when shooting, but the subtleties came through in the trailers. Eastwood thought the world of Cooper, narrating his docu. Clint always believed that less was more.
    I agree with him. I think it's far more effective for the viewer to be drawn to the actor.
    It was particularly effective in the western genre.

    Newman underplayed HOMBRE in the same fashion. 
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

     I think it's far more effective for the viewer to be drawn to the actor.

     That's why Spencer Tracy is one of my favorite actors. He could convey so much with just a look.

    Gary Cooper was OK. There were a few movies I liked him in. I can understand why he's a favorite of many and he was extremely talented.

    There's just a lot of actors from that era (1930s to 1950s) I like better -- Spencer Tracy, John Wayne, James Stewart, Cary Grant, William Powell, Gregory Peck, Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, Charlton Heston, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, probably a few more before I'd get to Cooper. 
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Roy, have you ever seen Cooper in Friendly Pursuation? It's slow but it shows his depth as the film evolves.

    I'm glad you mentioned Spencer Tracy. In his early days, he was the Dustin Hoffman of his time.

    Mitchum and Cagney were two of the most honest actors of them all. Extremely talented, especially Cagney, but it was always a job to them. Mitchum should have been nominated for an Oscar in Cape Fear. He made a flic called Killer in the family - a true story I believe. His performance was unnerving. It really was scary.
    Cagney could control the celluloid from start to finish.

    But Bogie may have been the best on that list of yours. He knew no boundaries, and unlike many actors who get rich and powerful, and become stereotyped for the paychecks, he expanded his craft as he grew older, constantly exposing hypocrisy at several levels.

    Few can match the quality of his body of work. But one who came close was Burt Lancaster. His performance in BIRDMAN OF ALCATRAZ was brilliant. That and Hoffman's R. Rizzo, and Pacino's memorable characterization of a suicidal blind man in SCENT OF A WOMAN are my three all-time favorite performances.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Robert Mitchum was always one of my favorites. He was great in "Thunder Road" as the moonshine runner, and "Night of the Hunter" playing the psychotic preacher with LOVE tattooed on the knuckles of one hand, and HATE tattooed on the knuckles of the other hand. 

    Bogie was great in "Teasure of the Sierra Madre":

    Dobbs: "If you're the police where are your badges?"
    Gold Hat: "Badges? We ain't got no badges. We don't need no badges!
                           I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges!"

    I'd add "Shenandoah" with Jimmy Stewart, to the list of best westerns. 
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from maxbialystock. Show maxbialystock's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Brando was the best American film actor ever--and even made a few westerns (One-Eyed Jacks, The Appaloosa, The Missouri Breaks), none of which was all that great. 

    Cooper was a minimalist actor, but deservedly won two oscars for High Noon and Sergeant York. 

    I think John Wayne was the quintessential cowboy in the movies--a good actor who was at his best in many westerns--John Ford's cavalry trilogy, the Searchers, The Man Who Killed Liberty Valance, True Grit, The Cowboys, The Shootist, Stagecoach, etc. 
     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from --the--yazzer. Show --the--yazzer's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    if GARY COOPER played baseball in real life, he would be JD DREW.

    and as much as i liked BRANDO as an actor, i would rate DE NIRO, JACK LEMON, and BURT LANCASTER over him. (for the last few years de niro has been embarrassing himself in the roles he has taken.)
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    hey max,

    i wouldn't include RED RIVER because it had a terrible ending. FORD wanted a happy ending, so he got it; but it ruined the movie for me.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    "Red River was one of my favorite movies"

     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    hey pike,

    notice you're still  walking around with pee-stained pants.
    you are pathetic in so many ways.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness


    What is this country coming to when Deerhunter, Hurtlocker, and Garcia2 get banned from a public forum for giving movie reviews.
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from royf19. Show royf19's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    harness,

    you're right about Friendly Persuasion. Cooper and Heston made a good pairing in The Wreck of the Mary Deare and his odd pairing with Audrey Hepburn in Love in the Afternoon made for an amusing flick.

    You got it wrong with Hoffman and Tracy. In his early days, Hoffman was the Spencer Tracy of his time.
    Wink

    I'm glad you mentioned Burt Lancaster. He was another excellent one from that era. And I agree with you about Bogart. He had underrated versatility right to the end with The Harder They Fall.

    To me, Tracy remains the gold standard in terms of pure acting ability. He had great range in drama and comedy. Fury, Bad Day at Black Rock, Captains Courageous, Inherit the Wind -- it doesn't get better in terms of acting. He was so great, you take his eight pairings with Katharine Hepburn and he still has an enviable catalogue of movies.

    As for Brando, max, I disagree. I always felt he was a bit overrated. He comes from method actor era and he always seem to be 'method acting.' That's not to wasn't great in some roles, but I agree with yazzer in putting Jack Lemmon , Robert DeNiro and Lancaster above him. And since we're in to later actors, I'd add Pacino, Nicholson and Paul Newman to the list above Brando.

    Oh -- and Walter Matthau.

    Of course, we've moved past Arness and westerns, but it's nice to have discussions where opinions are respected and people aren't ripping each other.



     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from dannycater. Show dannycater's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Underappreciated, But Outstanding Actor Pieces, Long and Short
    1. Walter Matthau in Bad News Bears, don't think he got enough praise for a role that gets caricatured. This includes his meltdown in the dugout about "don't you want to win!" His conflicted treatment of his players from could care less, to care too much, to trying to understand that they are just kids. With a great Vic Morrow as the win-at-all opposing coach. 
    2. William Holden in Stalag 17, he won the Academy Award, but people don't mention Holden enough in great actor debates. I don't think you can show rage better than Holden. He made the final 10 minutes of the film some of the best acting I've ever seen. It's my favorite scene ever in film.
    3. Roy Scheider in Jaws. Perfect variety of humor, fear, guts, and a guy just trying to do the right thing. Also watch him go toe to toe with Laurence Olivier in the fountain scene in "Marathon Man." 
    4. Jason Robards in All the Presidents Men. Perfection in supporting acting. Stole every scene he was in. Deserved his Academy Award.
    5. Alec Baldwin, Glen Gary, Glen Ross. Still a riveting, hilarious scene.
    6. Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein. Pure genius.
    7. Cary Grant in Notorious. Not the Cary Grant people are used to seeing.
    8. Charlton Heston in Planet of the Apes. I think he was a very underappreciated actor due to his politics and his blockbuster roles. 
    9. Fred MacMurray, Double Indemnity. delivered each sarcasm perfectly.
    10. Nick Nolte, North Dallas Forty. Outstanding acting. One of the better opening scenes to a movie.
    11. James Stewart in "Vertigo." Hitchcock got the best out of him.
    this was just a few of my favorites.
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from royf19. Show royf19's posts

    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness:
    Underappreciated, But Outstanding Actor Pieces, Long and Short 1. Walter Matthau in Bad News Bears, don't think he got enough praise for a role that gets caricatured. This includes his meltdown in the dugout about "don't you want to win!" His conflicted treatment of his players from could care less, to care too much, to trying to understand that they are just kids. With a great Vic Morrow as the win-at-all opposing coach.  2. William Holden in Stalag 17, he won the Academy Award, but people don't mention Holden enough in great actor debates. I don't think you can show rage better than Holden. He made the final 10 minutes of the film some of the best acting I've ever seen. It's my favorite scene ever in film. 3. Roy Scheider in Jaws. Perfect variety of humor, fear, guts, and a guy just trying to do the right thing. Also watch him go toe to toe with Laurence Olivier in the fountain scene in "Marathon Man."  4. Jason Robards in All the Presidents Men. Perfection in supporting acting. Stole every scene he was in. Deserved his Academy Award. 5. Alec Baldwin, Glen Gary, Glen Ross. Still a riveting, hilarious scene. 6. Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein. Pure genius. 7. Cary Grant in Notorious. Not the Cary Grant people are used to seeing. 8. Charlton Heston in Planet of the Apes. I think he was a very underappreciated actor due to his politics and his blockbuster roles.  9. Fred MacMurray, Double Indemnity. delivered each sarcasm perfectly. 10. Nick Nolte, North Dallas Forty. Outstanding acting. One of the better opening scenes to a movie. 11. James Stewart in "Vertigo." Hitchcock got the best out of him. this was just a few of my favorites.
    Posted by dannycater

    Great list. I agree with all of them. And I'd add Jason Robards in The Ballad of Cable Hogue.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness:
    harness, you're right about Friendly Persuasion. Cooper and Heston made a good pairing in The Wreck of the Mary Deare and his odd pairing with Audrey Hepburn in Love in the Afternoon made for an amusing flick. You got it wrong with Hoffman and Tracy. In his early days, Hoffman was the Spencer Tracy of his time. I'm glad you mentioned Burt Lancaster. He was another excellent one from that era. And I agree with you about Bogart. He had underrated versatility right to the end with The Harder They Fall. To me, Tracy remains the gold standard in terms of pure acting ability. He had great range in drama and comedy. Fury, Bad Day at Black Rock, Captains Courageous, Inherit the Wind-- it doesn't get better in terms of acting. He was so great, you take his eight pairings with Katharine Hepburn and he still has an enviable catalogue of movies. As for Brando, max, I disagree. I always felt he was a bit overrated. He comes from method actor era and he always seem to be 'method acting.' That's not to wasn't great in some roles, but I agree with yazzer in putting Jack Lemmon , Robert DeNiro and Lancaster above him. And since we're in to later actors, I'd add Pacino, Nicholson and Paul Newman to the list above Brando. Oh -- and Walter Matthau. Of course, we've moved past Arness and westerns, but it's nice to have discussions where opinions are respected and people aren't ripping each other.
    Posted by royf19



    Man, Roy, you got great taste in films. I found it interesting when Bogart talked about Rod Steiger, the poster boy for method acting, when they worked together in THE HARDER THEY FALL. It was an interesting clash of acting styles. But Steiger drove Bogart nuts with his long preparation.

    What interests me is seeing how each style epitomized their era, or was the era but the result of the style?
    Kinda like the Tracy/Hoffamn analogy (good one:)
    In Cagney's/Bogart's day, the technology was in it's infancy in a sense. So actors had to verbally carry the load.

    I think the intensity level rose with method actors. Their style blended with innovative camera work. And speaking of camera innovations, I always thought the wet/waxed look of the streets in SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS was duplicated in TAXI-DRIVER.

    Jack Lemon won an Oscar for SAVE THE TIGER (tremendous performance) when Redford/Newman cancelled each other out in THE STING, but what amazed me was that McQueen never was nominated for Pappillon.

    And there are many critics who felt Paul Muni was the greatest actor of them all.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness:
    Underappreciated, But Outstanding Actor Pieces, Long and Short 1. Walter Matthau in Bad News Bears, don't think he got enough praise for a role that gets caricatured. This includes his meltdown in the dugout about "don't you want to win!" His conflicted treatment of his players from could care less, to care too much, to trying to understand that they are just kids. With a great Vic Morrow as the win-at-all opposing coach.  2. William Holden in Stalag 17, he won the Academy Award, but people don't mention Holden enough in great actor debates. I don't think you can show rage better than Holden. He made the final 10 minutes of the film some of the best acting I've ever seen. It's my favorite scene ever in film. 3. Roy Scheider in Jaws. Perfect variety of humor, fear, guts, and a guy just trying to do the right thing. Also watch him go toe to toe with Laurence Olivier in the fountain scene in "Marathon Man."  4. Jason Robards in All the Presidents Men. Perfection in supporting acting. Stole every scene he was in. Deserved his Academy Award. 5. Alec Baldwin, Glen Gary, Glen Ross. Still a riveting, hilarious scene. 6. Gene Wilder in Young Frankenstein. Pure genius. 7. Cary Grant in Notorious. Not the Cary Grant people are used to seeing. 8. Charlton Heston in Planet of the Apes. I think he was a very underappreciated actor due to his politics and his blockbuster roles.  9. Fred MacMurray, Double Indemnity. delivered each sarcasm perfectly. 10. Nick Nolte, North Dallas Forty. Outstanding acting. One of the better opening scenes to a movie. 11. James Stewart in "Vertigo." Hitchcock got the best out of him. this was just a few of my favorites.
    Posted by dannycater


    Very interesting insights. You'd make a good critic. I always liked no-nonsense actors like Nolte and McQueen and Mitchum and one both you and Roy forgot: the great John Garfield. Perhaps the original rebel.

    Burt Lancaster made a film called THE SWIMMER. It was from a John Cheever short story about the hypocrisy of the wealthy. { Lancaster appears out of nowhere and is trying to find his way back 'home'. The viewer has no clue as to his plight, but as he uses a chain of swimming pools from ole wealthy friends, the pieces start to come together. Toward the end, he is noticeably tired. The wall which keeps out the truth- his family leaving him as he could no longer live with the hypocrisy - finally breaks down in a memorable last scene where he's locked out of a vacant house, which once was their home, pounding away while the rain falls. Note the symbolic rain.}

    In my school days, I had a professor I couldn't stomach. She wanted an essay on some boring subject matter. I noticed THE SWIMMER was on a separate list, but she excluded it. I said I wanted to write about it. She told me she'd flunk me if I did. Well, I did it anyway. Fk her. She gave me a D-----

    I guess she liked something about it.  Smile
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    Red River was directed by Howard Hawks, not John Ford, and was selected by AFI as the 5th best western ever made.  John Ford saw it and commented on how good Wayne was in it.

    Spencer was a great "natural" actor who could play in almost anything.  In the final scene of one of his movies with Katharine Hepburn, he produces tears on cue just to show her--his wife in the movie and a fellow lawyer-- that men can do that too. 

    I've always been a big fan of Henry Fonda, another no-nonsense actor who was good in a lot of movies, including John Ford's My Darling Clementine. 

    But I don't think anyone can match the diversity and excellence of Brando in On the Waterfront, Streetcar Named Desire, Viva Zapata, Godfather, Julius Caesar, A Dry White Season, Sayonara, Teahouse of the August Moon, The Freshman, The Wild Ones, Morituri, the Young Lions, and others that don't come immediately to mind.  Almost all film actors consider him to be the gold standard. 
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    You people need to get Netflix. $8 per month to stream. Lots of these old movies are on there. Get a Roku box so that you can stream the movies on your schedule.
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    harness, i'm a huge Lancaster fan. He was one of the all-time best, and even at the end of his career, he did a couple of memorable roles. His lines in "Field of Dreams" I cite all the time. Just a commanding presence on screen. From Here to Eternity, another brilliant underplayed on purpose role for Burt. Elmer Gantry...
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness:
    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness : Very interesting insights. You'd make a good critic. I always liked no-nonsense actors like Nolte and McQueen and Mitchum and one both you and Roy forgot: the great John Garfield . Perhaps the original rebel. Burt Lancaster made a film called THE SWIMMER. It was from a John Cheever short story about the hypocrisy of the wealthy. { Lancaster appears out of nowhere and is trying to find his way back 'home'. The viewer has no clue as to his plight, but as he uses a chain of swimming pools from ole wealthy friends, the pieces start to come together. Toward the end, he is noticeably tired. The wall which keeps out the truth - his family leaving him as he could no longer live with the hypocrisy - finally breaks down in a memorable last scene where he's locked out of a vacant house, which once was their home, pounding away while the rain falls. Note the symbolic rain.} In my school days, I had a professor I couldn't stomach. She wanted an essay on some boring subject matter. I noticed THE SWIMMER was on a separate list, but she excluded it. I said I wanted to write about it. She told me she'd flunk me if I did. Well, I did it anyway. Fk her. She gave me a D----- I guess she liked something about it. 
    Posted by harness



    If we're getting into 1960s-on, definitely Nolte. One of my favorites all-time. And Peter O'Toole belongs on an expanded Mount Rushmore of great actors. Two of my favorite movies of all time are The Lion in the Winter (that had a young Anthony Hopkins and Timonty Dalton) and The Stunt Man. 

    And who doesn't like Steve McQueen?

    If you like Steiger, check out this scene from The January Man, especially from the 2:15 mark on. Decent flick, but this scene with Harvey Keitel and Danny Aiello (sp?) was one of the best over-the-top acting scenes. Steiger is great in it.

     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    favorite westerns:

    All of Clints spagetti westerns...
    Open Range
    Broken Trail
    Tombstone
    Wyatt Earp
    All and any John Wayne
    glory (civil war)
    Gettesburg (sp) civil war
    Once upon a time in the west
    The magnificient seven
    The quick and the dead..........(sharon stone) whooooouh!
    audie murphy made a couple but I can't remember the names
     
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    Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness

    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness:
    In Response to Re: Off-day Ode to James Arness : If we're getting into 1960s-on, definitely Nolte. One of my favorites all-time. And Peter O'Toole belongs on an expanded Mount Rushmore of great actors. Two of my favorite movies of all time are The Lion in the Winter (that had a young Anthony Hopkins and Timonty Dalton) and The Stunt Man.  And who doesn't like Steve McQueen? If you like Steiger, check out this scene from The January Man, especially from the 2:15 mark on. Decent flick, but this scene with Harvey Keitel and Danny Aiello (sp?) was one of the best over-the-top acting scenes. Steiger is great in it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iN32EygoXYA
    Posted by royf19


    That Steiger clip was great, Roy. He owned that spot.

    This is one of the most intense scenes ever filmed, IMO.
    A kid wanting to live - a blind man wanting to die - finding common ground.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2rCyYbcR5to&feature=related

    This justifies the decision: (from 50 second mark)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dH4p9BQ3V9o
     
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