Sunday, May 30, 2010

RIP Dennis Hopper

"'The whim of a madman' I like that!"

Unlike Gary Coleman, everyone saw this death coming. It was only a matter of time. That doesn't make the loss sting any less.

"We did it, man. We did it, we did it. We're rich, man. We're retirin' in Florida now, mister. "

I could watch Dennis is almost anything. It was always amazing to me how versatile he was as an actor. Of course there are the iconic roles, such as Easy Rider and Blue Velvet, but there were lesser roles in Rebel Without A Cause and Cool Hand Luke that grabbed my attention just as much as his starring roles.

"Son of a bitch was right. She taste's like a peach."

Imagine my surprise when I first saw Hoosiers and noticed Dennis in another memorable role. I wasn't expecting him in the movie. I didn't know what to expect actually. I first saw Hoosiers in gym class in junior high. For reasons that escape me, the gymnasium was being used for something else and we couldn't go outside for an entire week. Instead we watched Hoosiers and Tucker during the class period, inside an empty classroom. Not being a fan of school related sports, I wasn't looking forward to watching the movie. Yet the story and Hopper drew me in.

"I know everything there is to know about the greatest game ever invented. "

He kept popping up in unexpected places and ended up making the films better. True Romance, already a classic, turned into an extraordinary movie once Dennis Hopper and Christopher Walken were allowed to chew scenery together. Even schlocky horror, like Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 and Land Of The Dead were made a little better because of his presence.

"I'm the Lord of the Harvest! "

I appreciate the sheer tenacity it must have taken to play King Koopa in one of the worst movies of 1993, Super Mario Brothers. That's saying a lot about a year which saw cinematic waste such as Coneheads, Cop & A Half, Surf Ninjas, Son Of The Pink Panther and Weekend At Bernie's 2.

"Here's what's logical to me: If you do not return with the plumbers and the rock... I shall personally... kill you."

Thankfully, we will have a rich legacy of film to watch. Good and bad, Dennis Hopper always made things interesting when he appeared on screen. There are very few actors that I can say that I would watch him in anything. Dennis Hopper was one of those rare actors.

"Zombies, man. They creep me out. "
"In dreams... I walk with you. In dreams... I talk to you. In dreams, you're mine... all the time. Forever."

1 comment:

dayf said...


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