Sunday, May 30, 2010

Dennis is Dead

Dennis Hopper died yesterday. Bummer, man--as he might say. But yo ... whatta life!

Do you remember Brad Pitt's much praised freak-out performance in, I think, 12 Monkeys? Stolen straight from Dennis Hopper's crazed combat photographer in Apocalypse Now.
(Brief parenthetical aside: top five best movies ever are, in random order: Godfather 2, McCabe and Mrs. Miller, My Man Godfrey, Last of the Mohicans (just for the scenery and the score), and Apocalypse Now.)
The miracle of this scene is that, as everybody, I suppose, knows, Brando was to be paid a million dollars for a week's shooting in a specified time-frame. When the shit hit the fan during the production of Apocalypse, Brando was asked to shift back his week. He refused.

So when he arrived, there was no script (Coppola liked to make it up as he went, to a degree, and the movie had already veered quite a distance away from its original path). He just showed up for a week and everything was, more or less, improvised.

That's the miracle of it all, dear reader.

This is Hopper from a little bit of Brando's week:

(Brief parenthetical aside #2: I look quite a bit like Brando here, with my new haircut.)
This made me smile too:

(Brief political aside: Martin Sheen would survive his stint in Vietnam and go on to be America's greatest president. Amazing.)


Anonymous Boyd Llankfein said...

I am clear in my mind, but my soul is mad. Or is it the other way round?

11:22 AM  

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