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Playing Drunk...Only One Got It Right


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Do you find the average "playing drunk" in any movie as silly and painful to watch as I do?

Yet there have been character actors who made a career from it.

I'm no fan of Nick Cage, but he figured out that a drunk never tries to act drunk; a drunk tries to act sober.

This is what won him his Oscar.

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I thought about this thread earlier when I watched NORTH TO ALASKA, an above average Fox western starring John Wayne, Stewart Granger and Fabian (yes, the singer-actor).

 

Fabian has a scene where he tries to impress a girl and gets wasted on some champagne, or maybe it was French wine. You get the idea. He was definitely trying to appear sober enough to impress her. LOL

 

Fabian also has a good drunk scene in TEN LITTLE INDIANS, the Agatha Christie thriller. He's a dejected, moody alcoholic who becomes the first 'Indian' to be murdered.

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Absolutely kerrect!

Crosby delivers a brovura with his realistic portrayal of a dipsomaniac.

The tortured man he played...Bing knew all too well.

 

I have a true, personal Bing Crosby story that I plan to post, but I will not do it unless at least 100 people on this board want to read it.

 

--Ascot

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Van Heflin earned an Oscar for that routine in JOHNNY EAGER. And because of this, MGM immediately promoted him to above-the-title status in his next films.

 

We had a thread not long ago about the correlation between Oscar wins and actors who earned those trophies playing boozers or dope fiends.

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If you are referring to Nicolas Cage in the movie "Knowing", he wasn't trying to play a drunk just dealing with the stress of raising a son, working as a college professor and dealing with the meaning of life itself.

 

Like he said to his students. Sh_t just happens.

 

Edited by: hamradio on Feb 3, 2011 1:21 PM

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> {quote:title=MyFavoriteFilms wrote:}{quote}

> Van Heflin earned an Oscar for that routine in JOHNNY EAGER. And because of this, MGM immediately promoted him to above-the-title status in his next films.

>

 

And elevates that film from utter, worthless crap, to immensely watchable!

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OK, so it's in the "funny drunk" category, not the great acting category, and being a drunk in real life is never funny. With that disclaimer, Freddie Frinton in "Dinner for One" was a reported teetotaler in real life who pulls off the comedic challenge of pretending to get drunk by degrees. Though hardly known in the U.S., this is arguably the most frequently viewed comedy short in the world, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zVd_VLO9xcc. Since its first showing in 1963, it has aired over and over again, year after year in Germany, Austria, and Scandinavia on multiple stations at different times on New Year's Eve. If you've never seen it before, give it a try. (You can fast-forward past the German intro, the rest is in English.) If you have seen it before, I recommend viewing it once, and only once, per year. That method has kept it fresh for me after many viewings -- and it allows you to ask, "Same procedure as last year?" as you start the feed.

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Milland's thirsty stroll up pawn shop row could be regarded as one of the finest moments in cinema...he had five other great moments.

Still, there were slapstick drunk moments in the bars that irritated me.

 

But forgetting Franciosa's "A Hatful of Rain" ... shows how senior MY moments are.

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