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Favorite Robert Redford Performances


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Well, BUTCH AND SUNDANCE is my second favorite movie of all time. I also liked Redford in ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN, THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN, THE STING and THREE DAYS OF THE CONDOR.  

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I  liked  Robert  Redford  in  The  Great  Waldo  Pepper  1975.  A  good aviation  flick  with  great  aerial  photography. It  had  an  very  good  cast  Bo  Svenson , Susan  Sarandon,  Geoffrey  Lewis,  Edward  Herrmann  and  Margot  Kidder.

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Without question, my favorite film that Robert Redford was in, is Out of Africa, although it's not his movie, and I wish he had tried to do more of an English accent.

 

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On 8/20/2021 at 10:07 PM, sewhite2000 said:

The only thing I know to tell you is he doesn't seem to do anything to hide or diminish the shock of his present appearance. That may have been the way he was in 1991 or whenever that movie came out, but I think he's embraced his current looks 30 years later.

Most stars of his magnitude are lit and shot by DPs at the top of their game.  They are used to that sort of treatment and more or less deserve it.  When someone walks in and puts up two lights, they naturally get nervous.  Their appearance IS their livelihood in so many ways.  It can seem self-centered, but it's just a matter of protecting "the brand."

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A tough question - Redford, like George Clooney, was someone who made wise choices throughout his career and chose good material.  I think All is Lost contains his finest performance, but I love him in The Way We Were, The Natural, Out of Africa, The Sting, yes, Brubraker.  There is a quiet integrity about Redford, almost Cooper-like, and also that intense star quality and chemistry.   I remember watching The Horse Whisperer in the theater with a girlfriend, and she said, "It's not believable that the woman would fall for him.  There's no problem with her marriage, and besides, he's kind of old-looking," at which point, I was -- duh -- it's Robert Redford, he's saved her daughter's mental health, and her husband is someplace else, and they're close dancing in this barn.  I think I'd have to be half-dead not be in love with him.

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On 8/20/2021 at 5:51 PM, Shank Asu said:

There's a smugness to Redford that has always put me off him

sewhite2000 and overeasy have already responded to this, so I will only add that I'm not sure "smugness" is quite the right term for what you seem to be referring to here. Anyone as preternaturally good-looking as Redford is usually going to have a certain degree of self-consciousness about their appearance and its effect on others, but I think that if anything, Redford's natural instinct was usually to try and downplay his potential to be devastatingly charismatic.  This was presumably so that audiences could at least have some chance of better relating to his characters and be able to focus more on his acting ability. He also seemed to have a built-in tendency towards naturalism, authenticity, and underplaying (implicit, for example, in his gentle teasing of Natalie Wood for some of her onscreen mannerisms). 

Having said all that, I'll admit that it is sometimes harder for a viewer to relate to anyone so attractive that one naturally tends to assume they've never experienced any suffering or major problems in life.  (When considering him for the lead role in The Graduate, for which he better resembled the book's physical description of Benjamin Braddock, Mike Nichols famously asked Redford, "you know what it's like when you strike out with a girl?" and Redford had no idea what he meant.)  But I tend to agree with speedracer5's overall assessment: "Redford seems to bring forth a persona of self-assurance, some arrogance, but remains likeable and sympathetic. He also conveys intelligence and a sense of humor."

To be sure, there's sometimes a certain remoteness, a certain wariness and restraint in Redford that can perhaps be mistaken for aloofness or smugness.  But to me it reads more as someone who always chooses his words and actions carefully, and is constantly assessing any given situation for its truthfulness and potential pitfalls.  Sort of reminds me of Barack Obama in an odd way.

 

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1 hour ago, Fausterlitz said:

sewhite2000 and overeasy have already responded to this, so I will only add that I'm not sure "smugness" is quite the right term for what you seem to be referring to here. Anyone as preternaturally good-looking as Redford is usually going to have a certain degree of self-consciousness about their appearance and its effect on others, but I think that if anything, Redford's natural instinct was usually to try and downplay his potential to be devastatingly charismatic.  This was presumably so that audiences could at least have some chance of better relating to his characters and be able to focus more on his acting ability. He also seemed to have a built-in tendency towards naturalism, authenticity, and underplaying (implicit, for example, in his gentle teasing of Natalie Wood for some of her onscreen mannerisms). 

Having said all that, I'll admit that it is sometimes harder for a viewer to relate to anyone so attractive that one naturally tends to assume they've never experienced any suffering or major problems in life.  (When considering him for the lead role in The Graduate, for which he better resembled the book's physical description of Benjamin Braddock, Mike Nichols famously asked Redford, "you know what it's like when you strike out with a girl?" and Redford had no idea what he meant.)  But I tend to agree with speedracer5's overall assessment: "Redford seems to bring forth a persona of self-assurance, some arrogance, but remains likeable and sympathetic. He also conveys intelligence and a sense of humor."

To be sure, there's sometimes a certain remoteness, a certain wariness and restraint in Redford that can perhaps be mistaken for aloofness or smugness.  But to me it reads more as someone who always chooses his words and actions carefully, and is constantly assessing any given situation for its truthfulness and potential pitfalls.  Sort of reminds me of Barack Obama in an odd way.

 

Sorry, had to laugh a little. You wrote an eloquent response, but there are many good looking people in the movies, and i don't react to them all the same way.  Have nothing against Redford, but i do get a smugness from him that not every attractive actor gives off. Just my opinion. you obviously have a fondness for him. i like his films just fine- probably the films he directed more so than the ones he has starred in.

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I like many of the films he's been in, but can't say that his performances have been a draw for me.   They all seem the same regardless of the film.  I did like "All is Lost"  very much, but more because I tend to enjoy those 'disaster at sea' films, rather than him in particular.

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1 hour ago, Shank Asu said:

Just my opinion, you obviously have a fondness for him.

Not particularly, no.  I do, however, think he can be quite effective in certain roles, particularly those that emphasize thinking/analyzing (e.g., The Candidate or All the President's Men) rather than a lot of deep emoting.  These are not usually the sort of roles that tend to win Academy Awards, so I suspect there may be a certain risk of (the dreaded word) slightly underrating him as a result.

Of course, we can't help our subjective reaction to any actor, and there's no need for you to justify or explain yours.  I was mostly just musing on why I seem to react differently than you do to Redford onscreen, even though I still recognized what you were alluding to. I wasn't, in any case, trying to suggest that you harbor any unconscious antipathy towards him simply for being handsome.  🙂

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