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Dennis Hopper dies at 74


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When Dennis was being interviewed, e.g., The Tonight Show, he came across as painfully honest about himself and related his movie experiences with humor and sometimes excruciating detail. He was one of a kind.

 

Why on earth didn't he get the Academy Award for Hoosiers??? The heart-wrenching facial expressions he gave his character were unforgettable.

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Dennis was one of the last, important links to the legacy of James Dean. He and Jimmy Dean became good friends, during the last year of Dean?s life. The two actors had spent a good amount of time, discussing their future in the movies, leading to Dennis eventually branching out into other fields. While his personal life usually remained in shambles, there were numerous returns to his acting career that stood out; most notable was an outstanding performance in the 1986 ?Hoosiers,? together with ?Blue Velvet? that same year! Most fans and even critics seemed to feel that Dennis was usually playing characters that were pretty much like his real self; this entails areas of character stress, boozing, drugs and harsh illogical treatment of women. Later on he established himself as a terrific photographer, having several books published of his photos. He directed the really good dramatic film of 1988, ?Colors.? He was admired by both fans and his peers, becoming a symbol to at least four generations of young people; most of which aspired to be performers. You might have to say that Dennis took up where Jimmy Dean left off and it?s believed by some that he more than succeeded; some critics and fans will even say that Dennis never really grew old or managed to get out of the wild, sort of youthful persona that became a trademark to his life and career. Despite his rather offbeat lifestyle that often got him into trouble, he somehow managed to recovery his pride and dignity those final years to his life and career that will no doubt never have him be forgotten.

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Two guys I always wished were my uncles: Keith Richards and Dennis Hopper.

 

He was always fun to listen to, had great stories and loved telling them. There's not much on utube, (sad in itself) but this is fun, talking about James Dean.

 

 

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Hopper really was a fine actor, but as a human being it seems he was far more interesting than any character he ever played. He was a real personality, and someone who was very much in touch with his uniqueness, and that's what made him a good actor and a good artist. Because his career was seriously thriving over the past few years, getting some really good roles that allowed and served his uniqueness to come through. He was one of those actors that would always make what could be a very standard film and raise the film right out of its mediocrity, and make it a better film because he was in it. I'm thinking specifically about the film, "Land of the Dead" by George Romero. Not that it was a bad film, it was an OK film but it was a lot better because Hopper was in it and doing his Hopper thing. I also really liked him in "True Grit". He is only very briefly in that film, but it was definitely a scene that stuck in my memory long after seeing it. He just always made an interesting impression in every film he made.

I agree that he was the last link with James Dean, but also one of the last links with the Actor's Studio. It's sad that so many of these great Actors Studio alumni are passing away, and won't be around to remind all of us Film addicts of that brilliant era during the 50's and early 60's when acting became so cathartic.

RIP Mr. Hopper, we'll miss you.

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