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Lee's acting development
Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:50am

TB7, you probably recall that Clint, around the time of GBU, bitched about how his pictures with Leone kept diminishing his parts as they went along -- (to paraphrase) "Van Cleef's got all the screen-time in FF$M, and now Wallach's the Star in GBU. I spend all my time practicing my drive [for the golf course]."

As for LVC's Performance in FF$M, I suspect very few fans of the man would place the film below the Top Two. As you rightly said, "Lee gives us EVERYTHING we could possibly want".

I mistakenly suggested in an earlier Post that Leone deserves much of the credit for what I call the RD/SD change (when Lee went from "Rushed Delivery" to a markedly "Slow Delivery" of his lines) --- it's been awhile since I've written or even thought about this, so I simply *forgot* that the RD to SD "conversion" happened over several years.

You can see it at least as far back as BONANZA: Bloodline (OAD: dec.1960)...
...where Lee's style is clearly "calming down", and he's acting with a confidence that's been missing in most of his performances, prior.

And in 1959's WANTED - DEAD OR ALIVE: the Hostage (oct.59), Lee's "Jumbo Kane" is a dividing line: Lee's playing an extreme Heavy that precursors "The Bad", but he's still got the Rushed Delivery during some of the show.

However, by LAW OF THE PLAINSMAN: Clear Title (like BONANZA, another dec.59 airing, ironically),
Lee's exhibiting definite Reserve -- the beginning of his mastery of the Quiet Menace style that will eventually become his hallmark.

In any case, that's part of the Hypothesis in my book... ;)


  • @BobO: Agree on PER QUALCHE...TheBad7, Fri Feb 16 12:38pm
    Hi Bob-- Agreed. This is the DEFINITIVE L.V.C. performance. Lee gives us EVERYTHING we could possibly want, and on display are all his strengths as an actor. Furthermore, Lee upstages the great Clint ... more
    • Lee's acting development — DCG, Sat Feb 17 12:50am
      • OUaTitWDoc, Sat Feb 17 9:57pm
        I heard that Leone wanted Clint, Lee and Eli for his triumphant Once Upon a Time in the West. Story has it that Clint thought "Great, the gang is back together" until he learned that Leone had... more
        • The G.B.U. Trio in WESTTheBad7, Mon Feb 19 5:01am
          Let me qualify this by saying that I am a big fan of Eastwood as both an actor and director--though I prefer him as an actor; in recent years, he sometimes gets too leisurely with his pacing--to the... more
          • ClintDCG, Tue Feb 20 10:58am
            First off: Nice Overview/Perspective on Clint, amigo. I'm pretty sure you know, TB7, that I agree with you --- and have spouting similar words for decades, whenever I fall into conversation about... more
            • @DC: The Eastwood Approach **Spoilers**TheBad7, Tue Feb 20 12:48pm
              Hi DC-- That's the definitive element to Clint as an actor--I'll be the first to admit, and I am a massive fan of his (have been since childhood), that he has a limited range as an actor. That being... more
              • Clint, reduxDCG, Wed Feb 21 6:35am
                Not a lot to add, amigo --- you pretty much covered it! ;) But I'll try... Never read BRIDGES/MC, and only saw the film a few years after it debuted. For whatever reason, it just didn't interest me... more
                • Final Eastwood ThoughtsTheBad7, Thu Feb 22 1:34am
                  Hi DC-- I only happened by THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY as it was in a stack of novels I had acquired--this was when I was a teenager, and at the time I was a voracious reader; it was there, I had... more
                • "That's you! You're The Thunderbolt!"TheBad7, Wed Feb 21 8:06am
                  No need for further explanation on THUNDERBOLT & LIGHTFOOT--it's in my Top Three for Eastwood pictures. He and Jeff Bridges should've both scored Oscars for their work in that film--you could even... more
                • Not to worry!Maggie, Wed Feb 21 7:04am
                  I wont stop stopping by because you go Eastwood or OT, I'm just slightly bogged down with work for a couple of days. I'm reading along every now and again, but I won't be able to write much before... ... more
          • Very insightful comments. Thanks! (nm)Doc, Mon Feb 19 9:40pm
        • Agree w/yr assessment, Doc...DCG, Sun Feb 18 2:23am
          ...and recall, as a kid, a Clint feature in PEOPLE magazine (mid-70s) that included a shot of him screening film for Editing practice. Best, DCG.
        • I'd be interestedMaggie, Sun Feb 18 1:26am
          in the male/female ratio among LVC fans and among Clint fans. In my perception Clint does not score very high in sex appeal, but Lee clearly does. At least I have known more male Clint fans than... more
      • ClintMaggie, Sat Feb 17 5:21am
        is not my favorite actor as I may have mentioned before. And I know he did go on bitching about Leone movies. But no wonder Lee and Eli Wallach stole the show, I always percieve Clints performance as ... more
        • Yep, Kinski was underrated -- if a bit Mad, to be sure. ;) I could never be confident whether his insane, public Rants were an Act or a Cry for Help. I discovered the work of Werner Herzog thru... more
          • The public rants are famousMaggie, Sun Feb 18 9:42am
            but there are rumours that he did that to attract attention. It is interesting to see old TV shows he appeared upon where he just tried to derail things by acting like a spoilt child and everybody... more
            • With the exception of...DCG, Sun Feb 18 10:25pm
              ..."not an easy character" (at least a lot of people have reported he's "easier" than a Kinski-type), the rest of that sentence applies exactly to Sergio Leone, too: "...shrouded in myths, many of... more
            • Read this on WikipediaDoc, Sun Feb 18 9:32pm
              "By May 1945, at the end of the war in Europe, the German POWs were anxious to return home. Kinski had heard that sick prisoners were to be returned first, and tried to qualify by standing outside... more
              • One presumes...DCG, Sun Feb 18 10:32pm
                ...that Wise & Baron's INTERNATIONAL STARS AT WAR (from which your above quote is extracted) is properly researched and therefore there's some substance to this detail of Kinski's life...but I'd... more
                • That sounds just likeMaggie, Mon Feb 19 2:05am
                  Kinskiesque (as opposed to Kafkaesque) behaviour. And like a tall story, that learned to walk on it's own, too... No way to tell! We all know what kind of crap can end up in print (remember the blue... more
                  • In/Sanity, Acting & the Media (incl. LVC)DCG, Tue Feb 20 11:29am
                    My approach to discerning Reality from Fantasy is researching til I discover at minimum 3 Reputable Sources (*not* Some Blogger's Opinion, natch) that provide support for whichever angle on a detail... more
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