Posts Tagged ‘Clint Eastwood’

So Much For Verisimilitude

One of the most difficult tasks in filming Superman: The Movie was the casting of the Man of Steel, himself.  The list of possible candidates was a veritable who’s who of 1970s top box office draws.  Everyone from Burt Reynolds to Paul Newman to Dustin Hoffman… even Muhammad Ali?  That one is even stranger than the candidate I was going to blog about.  Can you possibly imagine “The Greatest” in the role.

Another contender for the dual role of Superman/Clark Kent was an actor who had (and still has) close ties to Warner Brothers Pictures.  Clint Eastwood had already established himself as a different kind of action-hero.  Can you imagine Dirty Harry rescuing a fluffy white kitten from a tree.  He would be more likely to growl at the little girl and send her running in tears to her mother. Instead, we got an excited little tyke exclaiming to her mother that a man swooped out of the sky and rescued Frisky.  Her reward… a slap for telling more lies.

As for Mr. Eastwood’s take on the offer made nearly 35 years ago:  “it’s not for me.  It’s meant for someone, just not me.”  Thank goodness for that.  He did agree that Christopher Reeve nailed the role.  Incidentally, Clint was also offered the role of another iconic character back in the day.  Read this to find out which one.

What Could Have Been

Non King James Related Sports Evening

For the last two days, it seems the nation has been in the thralls of LeBron fever once again.  Holding out on his free agency decision until a live, hour-long press conference.  I say…. “Who cares?!”  Who does he think he is… Tiger Woods?

I did however, enjoy a sports related movie totally unrelated to basketball.  I enjoyed the 2004 movie, Million Dollar Baby starring Clint Eastwood, Hilary Swank, and Morgan Freeman.  I must say that Clint has sure made an impression on me with his more dramatic films instead of the macho, big gun shoot fests.  The last few films I have seen have been poignant and emotional.  He plays the curmudgeonly roles quite well.  Accomplished not only as an actor/director but as a musician as well along with his son, Kyle.

I was hoping that Million Dollar Baby was not going to be the typical boxer/trainer situation and I was not disappointed.  The movie was an intelligent, profound piece following the lives of a young female wannabe boxer and the very hesitant veteran trainer/manager.  It’s more about Maggie, the 31 year old’s dream of beating the odds, rising from her “trailer trash” roots, and becoming a contendah in the prize ring.  I know, been done countless times in countless ways.

Eastwood’s character is well-defined as well.  Not the typical one-dimensional trainer but so much more.  Why is Frankie so hardened?  Why does he play it safe with every fighter he manages when he knows they are worthy of their “one shot?”

Not so surprising but a very good movie which won Oscars for Best Actress, Supporting Actor, Direction, and Best Movie of 2004.  And so much more entertaining than the question that seems to have been on the minds of tens of people.

Telephone Operators On Skates?

Last Friday, I watched one of last year’s most talked about movies (at least in my circles).  I must say that the Clint Eastwood helmed/Angelina Jolie-starring film Changeling was well worth the months I have been endeavoring to watch it.  The story itself was harrowing made even more dramatic by the fact that is factually based.

Since taylhis has already given an excellent synop, I will mention the pains taken in the creating of late 1920-early 1930s Los Angeles.  Costuming, set design, the music, everything put you right there.  The only building that is still standing in the greater LA locale is the City Hall itself which has been seen in numerous television series and movies (I can think of two immediately: The Naked Gun and the watchable if laughable updated Dragnet starring Tom Hanks and Dan Aykroyd).  Eastwood even resurrected the LA streetcar (which have been out of service since 1961).  The multi-talented director also composed the musical score for the film which he has done in many of his efforts… primarily with his passion for jazz.  The costume design was totally period.  Did telephone switchboard operators really move along on roller skates… complete with key?

And here is my extreme geek topic of the day.  The fact that (The) Changeling is a title of a TOS episode was not lost on me.  In fact, some theatres received the film under the name Nomad which was the name of the space probe from the 1967 season two episode.  Not a total geek, I had to cheat on the year the episode premiered.

A truly memorable viewing experience.  Again, totally robbed at Oscar time (and Clint was not even nominated).