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Vic Morrow Discussion


newclassicfilmfan1
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Well, I wouldn't go as far as to say "a lot" of people in the forum think highly of him, cause there isn't too much talk about him on these boards.    As to the threads, I think there was 2 or 3 others who also liked him, but I don't read too much about him here.   I started or participated in the other threads along with maybe 2 or 3 other posters who I don't see here too often.  Anyway, I liked Vic Morrow and like to start a thread on him sometimes, especially today, since it would have been his birthday.   

 

I always felt he should have really gotten more "leading" roles in film.  Guess the opportunities didn't come his way and he primarily played the "bad guy" roles, but was never really a "lead" in films.   I always thought he gave top notch performances in whatever film or tv show he was in.  

 

Was wondering why he never got a "supporting actor" nomination for his role in Blackboard Jungle as that bad student Artie West.   I thought that was a great performance.    

 

The best work by Vic Morrow was as Sargeant Saunders in the tv show COMBAT! from back in the 1960's.  They simply don't make shows like that anymore - very real and gritty - and Vic Morrow was perfect for that show.

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Well, I wouldn't go as far as to say "a lot" of people in the forum think highly of him, cause there isn't too much talk about him on these boards.    As to the threads, I think there was 2 or 3 others who also liked him, but I don't read too much about him here.   I started or participated in the other threads along with maybe 2 or 3 other posters who I don't see here too often.  Anyway, I liked Vic Morrow and like to start a thread on him sometimes, especially today, since it would have been his birthday.   

 

I always felt he should have really gotten more "leading" roles in film.  Guess the opportunities didn't come his way and he primarily played the "bad guy" roles, but was never really a "lead" in films.   I always thought he gave top notch performances in whatever film or tv show he was in.  

 

Was wondering why he never got a "supporting actor" nomination for his role in Blackboard Jungle as that bad student Artie West.   I thought that was a great performance.    

 

The best work by Vic Morrow was as Sargeant Saunders in the tv show COMBAT! from back in the 1960's.  They simply don't make shows like that anymore - very real and gritty - and Vic Morrow was perfect for that show.

 

I don't know of anyone at this forum that knocked Morrow as it relates to his acting.  He clearly had a strong screen presence.  

 

But one reason he isn't mentioned much at this forum is that he was mostly a T.V. actor and NOT a movie actor.   His movie legacy isn't very strong with very few lead performances and only a handful of supporting roles.     As for Morrow not getting movie roles;  I believe this was mostly by choice.   He chose the steady paycheck he got from T.V. series and since T.V. work is demanding there just wasn't time to go on location and be in films.

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I liked Vic Morrow. The first movie I saw him in was his last, The Twilight Zone Movie. Then later I saw him in Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry and The Bad News Bears. I had no idea he was estranged from his daughter, by her insistence I believe. Irregardless, that's very sad.

I did see Blackboard Jungle just last year. Good movie.

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He's been discussed in the past - but not often.

 

There is a couple of great films and made for tv movies that are now on youtube that Morrow was in.   These are films that are rare - and they are now posted on youtube.    Great stuff.

 

Has anyone ever seen a film with Morrow, Peter Falk, Peter Lawford called "A Step Out of Line"?

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If you check the archives, you'll find there was a lengthy thread about him just this past spring/summer.  Most everybody on this forum has a favorable opinion of Vic's talent and history.  You can, if you wish, start threads about most anything you'd like.  All I'm saying is,that Vic's been done before, at least a COUPLE of times since I'VE been a member here, and I've been here for about three years. :)

Sepiatone

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Did anyone see these films:

Glass House

Target Harry

A Step out of Line

Portrait of a Mobster

 

I wish some of these would be on DVD.   Most of Morrow's films are not on DVD.

 

Saw 'The Glass House' a couple of times in the 70's. Very good movie for its time - and, as a made-for-TV film, one of the better ones. I believe it has had a DVD release.

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He pays a mountain man in James Garner's  A Man Called Sledge

Did he pay him in CASH?

 

...Or check.... ;)

I've seen Morrow all over the place over the years.

 

In MOVIES, playing some sort of thug,  in THE NAKED CITY....THE UNTOUCHABLES, THE RIFLEMAN....He did seem pretty versitile..too bad he was so tragically underused .  COMBAT should have been more of a springboard for his career than it was.  But, for what it's worth, as successful that show was, nobody ELSE from it went much of anywhere either.  Rick Jason's career seemed to drop off ALL radar afterwards.  The guy who played Littlejohn wound up in a couple of Clint Eastwood westerns for a few seconds at a time, PIERRE JALBERT who was CAJ, went into film editing, and cut the sequence in THE GODFATHER in which Michael kills off all the other MOB LEADERS. 

 

But Morrow also directed a few episodes of the show, and showed a deftness of hand at that endeavor to have done well enough in movies to go further.

 

Like I said...TOO BAD.

 

 

Sepiatone

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Great post.  I didn't know Pierre Jalbert played in the Godfather.   Before Combat, Jalbert was an Olympic skier.  Rick Jason didn't have much work in film or tv.  He was originally supposed to be the "lead" in Combat, but Morrow was so good, he became the entire show.  The guy who played Kirby, Jack Hogan, appeared in quite a few tv shows as a guest star.  The guy who played LittleJohn, Dick Peabody, didn't have much film or tv work either - I believe he was a radio announcer prior to Combat.

 

Vic Morrow loved directing and particularly camera work.  As you said, he directed several terrific episodes of Combat and used unique, hand held, camera angles which were a first at that time period.

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Did he pay him in CASH?

 

...Or check.... ;)

 

Forgot the "l"  :)

 

Anyway there is this big gold convoy and Morrow orchestrates the choreography of the protecting forces the van, the flankers, the rear guard, it basically looks like a German Iron Cross with the gold wagon in the center as it moves across the desert.

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was the film any good?   I think Vic Morrow's best movie role was his first - Blackboard Jungle.   I heard he beat Steve McQueen out for the role.   I believe he was a taxi driver before that.

It's not bad, I've never seen the international cut though, its a bit longer that the US release.

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was the film any good?   I think Vic Morrow's best movie role was his first - Blackboard Jungle.   I heard he beat Steve McQueen out for the role.   I believe he was a taxi driver before that.

You have to wonder: was he acting in that role, or just playing himself?  Guess you'd have to ask his lovely, talented daughter: Jennifer Jason Leigh.

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In Blackboard Jungle, I'd say he was acting in that role (not playing himself).  I read where he actually was a quiet, nice guy.    

 

His daughter, Jennifer Jason Leigh, was good in Single White Female - but she always talks with her teeth clenched and I can't get past how much she resembles Vic Morrow - same pouting mouth and eyes - the clip you included looks like Vic Morrow with a long black wig on.

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I have a Dutch VHS - PAL format tape of the 1977 Tv movie THE STRANGE POSSESSION OF MRS. OLIVER starring Karen Black and before the feature starts there is a preview of "A STEP OUT OF LINE" that runs a couple of minutes.  I'd like to find "A Step Out Of Line" one o'these days cos I still trade videos with the fellow from The Netherlands, but it probably won't be easy for him to find one.  Old Dutch VHS video releases of old American Tv movies aren't exactly high on the list of tapes for collectors to save.  I was very fortunate to have acquired the 'MRS. OLIVER' tape.  I don't give up easy, though . . . 

 

     I've seen a 1979 movie called THE EVICTORS and Vic Morrow is listed first in the credits, but his role is actually pretty small.  He plays a real-estate agent.  Michael Parks, who was billed 3rd, has much more 'face-time' as the main actor in THE EVICTORS. 

 

    I've wondered sometimes, in whatever afterlife there may be, if Vic Morrow and film and Tv director Boris Sagal ever commiserated (did I spell that right?) on their earthly fates.  

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In Blackboard Jungle, I'd say he was acting in that role (not playing himself).  I read where he actually was a quiet, nice guy.    

 

His daughter, Jennifer Jason Leigh, was good in Single White Female - but she always talks with her teeth clenched and I can't get past how much she resembles Vic Morrow - same pouting mouth and eyes - the clip you included looks like Vic Morrow with a long black wig on.

If I could agree with any part of that, I would, but by the looks of it, I won't since I can't. I'll simply disagree entirely with every word of it, by standing in agreement with the Coen Bros. on the quality of talent  they saw in this actress, just as it is/was, when they cast her for such a highly mannered role so demanding of that dazzling quickness of wit and delivery. "Teeth clenched"? Bosh. It's clean, hard, quick, sharp diction that comes across to the maven of it as way hip and witty as hell.

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