Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Celebrating with the world's greatest train-set enthusiast

Some important birthdays today. First off my brother, who in all likelihood is unfamiliar with this blog's existence, though I have a feeling his not dicking around on the internet is the reason why he recently got promoted at his fortune 500 company job. Still he's my brother and I love him and am proud of him.
In the world of cinema however there are three major birthdays. First off is Brian De Palma regular Gregg Henry (Body Double, Scarface and Femme Fatale to name a few), the man is to De Palma what Campbell is to Raimi. Henry has stolen scenes from leading men as varied as Mel Gibson (in Payback) and Nathan Fillion (in Slither). He can currently be seen as Eddie Izzard's extremely corrupt and lecherous boss on the marvelous FX series The Riches. He's 56 today, but he brings the smarm of a man twenty years his junior.
Next, modern film's greatest leading man, George Clooney is turning a stately 47 today. I've waxed rhapsodic on Clooney before but I could still go on for days about how the American cinema is a much better place for having Clooney in it. From his early mullet'ed, humble beginnings on The Facts of Life and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes to mega-starrdom with countless examples of pitch perfect work (sure Leatherheads was a misfire but pobody's nerfect, am I right?). JA over at My New Plaid Pants has five great performances in mind and you really should check them out here. My own favorite Clooney performance you ask? I guess I'd have to say it's Ulysses Evrett McGill. In addition to having the good sense to be a Dapper Dan man and being fortunate enough to be blessed with the gift of gab, Evrett is always more than happy to spit out reams of good advice, like so:
Lastly, today commemorates borth of the man I consider to be the King of Movies. You can argue that our King in question is more of Lear figure, a once great man shamed in old age but the fact remains that Orson Welles changed movies forever. He's one of the greatest filmmakers of all-time and as practically a boy, made the American cinema grow-up. I love Welles in all his incarnations, the boy genius, the writer, the director, the actor, the radio impresario, the camp figure, the bloated pitch man, the basso profoundo narrator and all his other iterations. I could go on and on about Welles but it's all just a roundabout way of saying that Orson Welles IS cool. His coolest character? That would have to be as the third man himself, Harry Lime. Here are the scenes that fans of the movie should get a chill down their spine over and if you've never seen The Third Man well then you are in for the treat of a lifetime.
First we have Lime's introduction, coming after nearly an hour's worth of build-up and everyone talking about Harry Lime, who is SUPPOSED to be dead:

Then we have one of the most famous speeches in movie history. Glorious:


Frank said...

"Please draw up the standard 'Rich and Famous' contract for Kermit the Frog and friends."- Orson Welles as Lew Lord.

Also, Clooney was in "RETURN of the Killer Tomatoes," not "ATTACK of the Killer Tomatoes." YOUR BLOG IS NOT FUNCTIONING IN A MANNER THAT IS SATISFACTORY!!!

Bobert Flotsam said...

when i eat tomatoes, i say little prayers that they dont RETURN and ATTACK me in some sort of killinglingus manner.