Saturday, September 27, 2008

Paul Newman

He should have been given a shelf of Oscars for "The Verdict."

His reading of Frank Galvin, the alcoholic Boston lawyer, was brave and unforgettable.

Redford had 6 directors quit on him when he tried to make the movie. Redford wanted the character turned into a tradional hero. That's Redford. The directors walked, and then Newman got hold of the project.

He lost that year at the Oscar's to Ben Kingsley's thorough reincarnation of "Ghandi."

He should have won a shelf of Oscars for "The Hustler." His portrayal of Fast Eddie Felson, the pool player who has to learn life's lessons at great cost is gripping and watchable year after year.

He lost unbelievably that year to Maximillian Schell in "Judgement at Nuremberg," a stolid, plodding docudrama that managed to make one of history's greatest tragedies almost boring.

(At the same ceremonies, George C. Scott and Jackie Gleason both lost in the Best Supporting Actor category for their astonishing work in "The Hustler" to George Chakiris in "West Side Story." Go figure.)

He was that rare thing - Paul Newman - a Huge Movie Star, who happened to be also a Great Actor.

And a philanthropist and social activist and a devastatingly charming handsome fellow.

We will search for some time to find his like again.


Scotland Yard said...

I couldn't agree more with you, David, that Newman should have been given a shelf of Oscars for "The Verdict" an extraordinary film and performance.

Anonymous said...

Matthew McConaughey always reminds me of Paul Newman, but looks are where it ends.

Beth said...

It frightens (yes, that's the correct word) me to witness the passing of old Hollywood. Who will be left after the truly fabulous superstars like Newman have passed on--Seth Rogan and Jack Black? Call me naive or an idiot, but I need my heroes--be they on film or in parliament or one the ice or sitting on the couch watching the BBC News. RIP, Mr. Newman.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Rest in peace, Paul Newman. A supremely talented, good, decent, loving, caring human being.....