Robert Redford -well?

..and why not?
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Davey the Fat Boy
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Postby Davey the Fat Boy » 07 Sep 2006, 22:00

toomanyhatz wrote:I almost like him enough to forgive The Horse Whisperer.


Didn't see it. Bad, eh?
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Postby toomanyhatz » 07 Sep 2006, 22:14

Davey The Fat Boy wrote:
toomanyhatz wrote:I almost like him enough to forgive The Horse Whisperer.


Didn't see it. Bad, eh?


Not truly awful, I guess. One's appreciation of it depends on their tolerance for sentimentality. So you might like it. :D

But seriously, this was a bit of a flip response to you saying he's a natural on camera. I agree with you on that point. In the 70s particularly he played so many different kinds of parts and made it look easy. In the Horse Whisperer it's true too, but it's more of a bad thing. He's supposed to carry an "aura" and indeed he does. So the whole time, instead of watching the plot develop, I found myself staring at him thinking "Hey, that's Robert Redford. Yep. Sure does carry an aura. Can't keep my eyes off him. What'd that other character, what's-her-name, just say?" The problem wasn't the acting, it just could have used someone a bit more anonymous.
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Postby sloopjohnc » 07 Sep 2006, 22:27

While I like Electric Horseman okay (I know Jane Fonda's supposed to be whiny, but c'mon.), I don't think Redford quite carried it off 100%.

I kept thinking, Sam Elliott would have been a lot better.
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Postby Sneelock » 07 Sep 2006, 22:34

actually, I don't like it very much.
the least of his Sidney Pollacks to me.

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Postby Stirling Moss » 07 Sep 2006, 22:36

Sneelock wrote:actually, I don't like it very much.
the least of his Sidney Pollacks to me.


Fair enough - but it wazzes all over Out Of Africa.

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Postby Sneelock » 07 Sep 2006, 22:39

I stand corrected!
WHAM!!!

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Postby Sneelock » 07 Sep 2006, 23:32

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I think it's a rug!

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Postby Clippernolan » 07 Sep 2006, 23:43

Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid, Jeremiah Johnson, All The President's Men, The Natural, and a more recent one The Clearing, are all top notch films. I even like Sneakers! Robert Redford thrived in the 70's because there was so much emphasis on realism then. And he is one of those actors who relies on realism for his performances, which I think is why a lot of people find him a bit bland. But there's a lot going on underneath his performances, and his presence shines through in the details.
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Postby The Modernist » 07 Sep 2006, 23:49

Interesting point Clipper, I'd not really considered him in that light. I know what you mean though, he underplays a lot doesn't he?

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Postby Clippernolan » 07 Sep 2006, 23:58

The Unique Modernist! wrote:Interesting point Clipper, I'd not really considered him in that light. I know what you mean though, he underplays a lot doesn't he?


In many ways, he's the Anti-Pacino in that sense, even though both actors thrived in the realism world of American 70's cinema. Both achieve emotional connections with the material, but with Pacino he plays it out here, where Redford always let you see it as it happens from the outside in. Jeremiah Johnson is a great example, as he returns from his work as a guide for the army, only to find that the Crow exacted their revenge against him for leading the army through their burial ground. You can see the emotions, the intensity, the pathos, but it's not because Redford shows you. It's just that it is there, undeniable. This is not to say he's better than Pacino, but Redford is a unique talent in this particular respect. And no one else can touch him.
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Postby The Write Profile » 08 Sep 2006, 00:15

Although we're talking about his acting here, might I say that the Sundance festival somehow managed to embody the changes within supposedly "idependant" cinema. It struggled for a few years and it's interesting that the two films that catapaulted it into the mainstream were quite different in their approach.

One of them was Sodebergh's Sex, Lies & Videotape, which I suppose led to a lot of the hip, dialogue-infused semi-indie American films during the early part of the 90s that thrived on cool detachment and a sly commentary on contemporary relationships (see also Whit Stillman and Hal Hartley), the other, Reservoir Dogs, essentially paved the way for hyper-self-conscious, pop-culture-obsessed crime cinema, with an emphasis on coolness over content. Actually, as an aside, I think Reservoir Dogs is easily the most satisfying of Tarantino's films, but that's partly down to the superb performances (particularly from Roth and Masden) and the tightness of structure. But I digress.

Anyway, in many ways the latter film had a much greater impact on not only indie cinema but also the festival too, just in terms of the climate change. Not just the slew of Tarantino-wannabes that tried to make their mark at the festival, but also Mirimax's using of it as a means to scout out product and its more celebrity-fixated aura.

It really is a major festival now in the sense that its appeal is largely more middlebrow (to name an example, something like Whale Rider benefited hugely on the back of its Sundance success) and I wonder whether some major (or semi-major) studios use it more as an audience testing ground for future accolades, rather as a way to promote more offbeat, idiosyncratic product.

Yet I don't think one can deny that, for all its faults, the festival has largely been (on balance anyway) beneficial to indie cinema, even if it's become more compromised/compartmentalised as a result. Its death knell was probably the year that awful Mariah Carrey film was premiered, but fortunately they've toned it down a bit more since then.

Actually, it'd be interesting to see if the Deniro-sponsored Tribeca film festival actually gets off the ground in any meaningful way, it's going for a few years now, but hasn't had that big film or big idea to really bring it to the fore or give it its own identity.

As an aside, how do BCBers feel Beatty's 70s work stands up to Redford? I find his 70s stuff interesting, there's always something incredibly smarmy and self-absorbed about it even when he's undercutting himself, but in some ways I think it's that part of the appeal.
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Postby The Write Profile » 26 Nov 2006, 07:33

Clippernolan wrote:
The Unique Modernist! wrote:Interesting point Clipper, I'd not really considered him in that light. I know what you mean though, he underplays a lot doesn't he?


In many ways, he's the Anti-Pacino in that sense, even though both actors thrived in the realism world of American 70's cinema. Both achieve emotional connections with the material, but with Pacino he plays it out here, where Redford always let you see it as it happens from the outside in. Jeremiah Johnson is a great example, as he returns from his work as a guide for the army, only to find that the Crow exacted their revenge against him for leading the army through their burial ground. You can see the emotions, the intensity, the pathos, but it's not because Redford shows you. It's just that it is there, undeniable. This is not to say he's better than Pacino, but Redford is a unique talent in this particular respect. And no one else can touch him.


Interesting post- I can see where you're coming from (though I think Pacino's 70s work actually includes a lot of subtle underplaying, he managed to give real nuances to characters that could range from emotionally empty to , in the case of Dog Day Afternoon, just plain dunderheaded). But Redford's ace was the fact that he really set things at a slowburn didn't he? Part of the reason why All the President's Men has such a pressure-cooker atmosphere out of relatively little plot (let's be honest, much of it involves them knocking on doors) is the way that Hoffman's high-wired intensity plays against Redford's almost serene approach to the material. It's as if he's almost disappearing into the film's hazy visuals or something, quite startling to watch really. And obviously perfect for the film.

Anyone who's a fan of the picture would be advised to pick up the recent DVD Special Edition- Redford's commentary is really enthralling, as he fills in a lot of detail about the making of it as well as the actual story (including a lot of new material surrounding Mark Felt now that he's been outed as Deep Throat). However, there's an interview with him in the making of and he looks terrible, age has really caught up with him. Even Dustin Hoffman doesn't look as bad comparatively!
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Postby The Dríver » 26 Nov 2006, 13:00

I don't think I've seen anything much by Redford in the last 20 years. He can put in some fine performances though, as has already been said by others.

Three Days Of The Condor is a great movie, as were his two collaborations with Paul Newman. I quite like The Candidate too.

A great actor but he doesn't seem to be right for the gritty roles that any of his contemporaries were getting.
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Postby marios » 26 Nov 2006, 13:05

The Driver wrote:
Three Days Of The Condor is a great movie, as were his two collaborations with Paul Newman. I quite like The Candidate too.


Agreed. I remember catching 3DotC a few years ago on telly without knowing much about it and i was surprised at how much i liked it.

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Postby Davey the Fat Boy » 03 Feb 2007, 19:17

Anyone here seen this one?

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Deserves to be considered with Redford's best. Why didn't more people see it?
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marios

Postby marios » 04 Feb 2007, 02:23

davey the fat boy wrote:Anyone here seen this one?

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Deserves to be considered with Redford's best. Why didn't more people see it?


I have seen it, but i wasn't as impressed as you. Not a bad film, just not great. Certainly not in the same league as "his best".

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Postby Davey the Fat Boy » 04 Feb 2007, 03:26

= marios = wrote:I have seen it, but i wasn't as impressed as you. Not a bad film, just not great. Certainly not in the same league as "his best".


I think it is. In fact I think it may be the most undervalued film of his career. Unfortunately it was marketed as a thriller which probably set it up for failure in the minds of a lot of people who saw it. I doubt many of the folks who saw it on date night were prepared for an unflinching portrait of a marriage framed by a slowly-paced kidnapping drama.
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