Happy #78 To Robert Duvall
How the hell did Robert Duvall not win Best Supporting Actor for “Apocalypse Now”? Come to think of it, “Kramer Vs. Kramer” is good and all but how the hell didn’t “Apocalypse Now” win Best Picture? It’s a complete and total work of genius and the greatest look at the Vietnam War in film history. Yes…better than “Platoon”.
Today is Robert Duvall’s 78th birthday. Duvall is, in my humble opinion, one of the finest American actors to ever live. For my money, the greatest American actors ever, in no particular order, are Duvall, Gene Hackman, Paul Newman, Marlon Brando, and Robert DeNiro.
Here are my favorite Duvall performances:
5. Boss Spearman, “Open Range”
This is an incredibly underrated movie. It was directed by Kevin Costner and he got one of the best performances in a Western ever from Duvall.
4. Mac Sledge, “Tender Mercies”
Duvall nailed the portrayal of this broken down country singer and it won him his only Academy Award to date.
3. Tom Hagen, “The Godfather, Part 1 & 2”
If you didn’t think that Tom Hagen meant business when he delivered the news that led to the horse head in the bed…well, you didn’t see the whorehouse scene with Senator Geary in Part 2.
2. Sonny Dewey, “The Apostle”
Looking back, isn’t it slightly tragic that Jack Nicholson won Best Actor for “As Good As It Gets” over Duvall for “The Apostle”? Duvall directed and wrote this perfect role that would have been his most electric role to date if not for…
1. Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore, “Apocalypse Now”
As stated earlier, his Best Supporting Actor loss for this role is one of the biggest crimes in Academy Award history. He is only on-screen for maybe 20 minutes but his role is the highlight of the film. How difficult is it to outshine the performances from Martin Sheen, Dennis Hopper, and Marlon Brando in this movie? Well, he does it.
Cinematically Correct note: Charlie don’t surf…and neither do I.