Tag Archives: Tobin Bell

The Set of 400: #31 – My Favorite Dog Painting (Modern)

Today! Because as far back as I can remember I always wanted to be a gangster –

Goodfellas (1990)

Directed by Martin Scorsese (x5)

Starring Ray Liotta (x3), Robert De Niro (x6), Joe Pesci (x3), Lorraine Bracco (x3), Paul Sorvino (x3), Frank Vincent, Mike Starr, Tony Darrow (x2), Frank Sivero, Chuck Low, Gina Mastrogiacomo, Catherine Scorsese, Samuel L. Jackson (x12), Suzanne Shepherd, Debi Mazar (x2), Michael Imperioli, Kevin Corrigan (x3), Tony Sirico (x2), Illeana Douglas (x2), Paul Herman, Tony Lip, Vincent Pastore, Tobin Bell (x2), Vito Antuofermo, Frank Albanese, Johnny Williams, Elaine Kagan, Beau Starr, Welker White, Henny Youngman (x2), Jerry Vale, Isiah Whitlock Jr. (x2)

In the annals of great Oscar crimes, people are quick to jump on 1998, as I guess they feel Shakespeare in Love too frothy and inconsequential to beat the likes of Elizabeth, Life is Beautiful, and Terrence Malick’s epic comeback to prominence, The Thin Red Line. I’m sure I’ve brought up Saving Private Ryan before, so I won’t get back into that again. But I think there’s a case that can be made for Shakespeare in Love – maybe not in that deep a year, but in some year. However, the great Oscar robbery of the ’90s and of all times isn’t that – hell, I could come up with a bunch of years more egregious than ’98. No, the worst hit job ever done was Dances With Wolves somehow beating Goodfellas for Best Picture/Director in 1990.

This boring goddamn thing

You can say that maybe the Academy didn’t want to go with the violent gangster film – even though they’d handed Best Picture to both the Godfathers by this point – but then the option became the pastoral white savior Native American movie? You’re telling me they didn’t realize how rough they’d snubbed Martin Scorsese all those years and couldn’t recognize his (ever so slightly) waning greatness, and figure maybe it was time to reward him when a truly, truly great film came along, instead of waiting for the next convenient time, which wouldn’t arrive for over a decade and a half? Plus, what, they had to give Kevin Costner an Oscar?? The 1990 Academy Awards make no sense whatsoever, so stuff your Saving Private Ryan griping. That 45 great minutes wrapped around two hours of next to nothing isn’t in the same ballpark.

Remember how Captain Miller’s last words basically show how meaningless his life was and he only existed to teach Ryan a lesson? Remember that? Remember how you think the old guy at the beginning is Miller (because of the whole eye-jump though time) but it’s not Miller, because of how lazy the device was? Ugh, Saving Private Ryan, I swear to God

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The Set of 400: #335 – My Favorite JFK Assassination Guilt

Today! Because good men like you and me are destined to walk a lonely road –

In the Line of Fire (1993)

Directed by Wolfgang Petersen

Starring Clint Eastwood, John Malkovich, Rene Russo, Dylan McDermott, Fred Thompson (x2), John Mahoney, Gary Cole, Tobin Bell, John Heard, Steve Railsback, Gregory Alan Williams, Jim Curley

Following on the heels of his gigantic Oscar and box office success with Unforgiven in ’92, Eastwood cemented his Hollywood comeback with this taut, terrific thriller, pitting his secret service agent against Malkovich’s taunting assassin. And really, the only thing in the way of Malkovich taking home his own Oscar was this happened to land in the same year as Tommy Lee Jones work much discussed in this space in The Fugitive (see this explanation in my extensive justification for #337’s Under Siege earlier this week). ’93 was a pretty great year for action adventures – there are nine films from the year on this list, and starting here the next five are all thrills and explosions and monsters! Up until now, it’s been Robin Hood: Men in Tights (#395), The Nightmare Before Christmas (#379), and The Sandlot (#339) though. Stay tuned from here through to the 2020 Vernal Equinox (March 20th, dummies!) to cover the next five! Continue reading

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