Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Alternate Best Supporting Actor 1979: James Remar in The Warriors

James Remar did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Ajax in The Warriors.

The Warriors is a stylish and rather entertaining film about a gang who must return to their territory through many enemies after a grand meeting of the gangs has gone terribly wrong.

Although I do genuinely like the Warriors as a film it's not a film I would describe where the acting really stands out, for the most part anyway. Michael Beck is a bit too stoic as the lead Warrior Swan and most of the other warriors seem pretty interchangeable. The same goes for most of the villains who are more defined by their look then whatever it is that they do, well except for David Patrick Kelly who is always a perfect fit in the role of a slimy weasel. Out of the warriors though there is one performance that stands out and obviously that performance belongs to James Remar. Remar plays Ajax who while not the leader of the Warriors is one of their most prominent members. Ajax wants to be leader and does not mind saying that he's a better man for the job than Swan. Remar's performance, unlike almost every other performance in the film, makes his presence known refusing just to be part of the scenery created by Walter Hill.

Remar's carries himself with a considerable amount of cool early on oozes with the right sort of menace in his performance. Remar's makes himself an imposing bad ass incredibly well, and has a certain charisma with his part that is a tad a lacking with his co-horts in the film. Remar honestly makes you think that Ajax should be the leader simply because Remar carries so much more command with his performance than Beck is able to ever muster with his work. This technical problem is made worse though as Remar just is so much more in the situation with his performance in a physical sense to as he brings the energy needed in the situation, and although you obviously see the fight with the rest of the performances, it is through Remar's performance that you really feel the fight as well. The funny thing though is the film does wish to show us Ajax as a hot head with the wrong kind of lusts who is too crazy to be the leader, and Remar does not reject this idea either.

Remar is equally effective in showing why Ajax is also far from the ideal leader since he probably likes certain elements of gang life a little too much. Remar's always shows that Ajax has an energy about him, a definite violent energy that is ready to explode at every time. As I wrote before, Remar brings the right physicality to the role as he shows that Ajax almost is always holding himself in a bit since he is ready to explode at any minute. Violence is not all that he loves as Ajax is also a very lusty sort since he is also often preoccupied with women, the problem is for him is he never really stops thinking about the violence either. Remar builds up his character well so when Ajax finally just decides to go on and fight we see the full extent of Ajax's ferocity as a fighter while Remar is careful to show that Ajax is also loving every moment of the battle.

Remar's best scene is when all of Ajax's vices come together as he tries to harass a woman in the part. Remar's quite good in this scene because he portrays it every simply as the worst of the thug mentality, and shows technically what the real nature of Ajax is. The best moment comes when the woman reveals herself to be a cop while handcuffing Ajax to a bench and signaling for him to be picked up. Remar's is very good in the scene portraying Ajax as losing any of that cool he had before, and almost turns him into an animal in a cage that is simply trying to get from from his bonds. The only problem is with the scene is it is instantly the end of Ajax and we never see him again once he is taken away by the police leaving us only with the far less interesting characters. Remar with his relatively brief time though gives a much fuller portrayal of gang member as he honestly brings the cool with the tough carefree attitude, yet cleverly subverts that by showing he still is a thug when you see what really compels him.

10 comments:

luke higham said...

Louis: Your rating & thoughts on Hugh Jackman in The Prestige.

RatedRStar said...

He is so cool in this film, James Remar is actually a good actor, he just had a problem with picking the right stuff, he has a great voice and command, I should also say I liked seeing him again in Django Unchained =D.

I should say I also liked Rembrambt in The Warriors cause well, he was quite lovely Louis lol.

I should also say, I loved the video game version of The Warriors by Rockstar, its very faithful.

Michael McCarthy said...

Most of the film was very entertaining, but I thought the ending was incredibly anticlimactic. I also feel I should apologize for suggesting Beck for 1979 Lead, it had been a while since I'd seen the film and I just remembered liking it so I threw his name in haha.

RatedRStar said...

@Luke: I do watch the Premier League its the best league of course, but no my favorite team is Bayern Munich.

luke higham said...

RatedRStar: Mine's Chelsea.

Michael Patison said...

Luke: I wanted to add my thoughts on the Brazil-Germany game.

Obviously the first thing that comes to mind is how quickly and completely they fell apart after Muller scored off what I believe was Germany's first set-piece of the game. Up to that point, Brazil had played above average, even if they were simultaneously unable to reign in their emotionally charged, frenetic pace to create solid chances in front of Mani Neuer. Germany's defense, no doubt helped by the absence of the paceless Per Mertesacker, was up to those early challenges.

I fully expected Germany to win once Neymar was out. Without him, they simply don't have the firepower going forward, and they rely too much on players like Marcelo leaving their defensive lines and attacking. I'll admit Marcelo is pretty good and sometimes rather dangerous going forward and that is utilized incredibly well with Real Madrid, but Germany's to good in counterattack (and attack in general) to have that work well. Everybody said Neymar's absence was the death blow, but it was really Thiago Silva's absence that scuttled their proverbial ship. Without Neymar they were unorganized and sloppy, but with Silva that sloppiness could have led to a 3-0 or 3-1 defeat, not a 7-1 defeat. I'll argue it forever, Thiago Silva's absence cost them their dignity in that game.

I do not hope there are riots in the streets tonight. For better or worse, as an American, I cannot imagine people being so obsessed (I say that as positively as possible) with a game that they'd riot in the streets just because of a win or a loss, no matter how big. For a nationality known so much for being over-the-top and hot-headed, we Americans are strangely subdued in this sense. Going back to Brazil, though, I really hope there aren't riots. If there are, I absolutely hope no one dies.

Brazil's implosion will be the story ad infinitum, but we need to remember Germany played lights-out for 90 minutes, save the mistake by Boateng and the rest of the defense at 90' that allowed Oscar to slot one in. They played like the champions they may very well become. This is the golden age of German football. Everybody knows it, and everybody agrees it is. Now they just need to put the pieces together once and for all.

Hats-off to Miroslav Klose for his record-breaking goal. He 100% deserved it. Too bad it wasn't with his head. I'll say it now, Thomas Muller will pass him eventually.

Here's hoping for a Deutsch-Dutch final to see who is the best of the Germanic peoples.

Michael Patison said...

As for Premier League teams, which you also didn't ask for my opinion on but are going to get it anyway, I don't really have one yet. The easy choice is Everton because of Tim Howard, but I don't really know yet. I have to watch more to find out. Aston Villa maybe? They were the first team I ever played with in a FIFA player career mode, and they're also a blast as a manager too.

As for other leagues:
La Liga: Real Madrid
Bundesliga: Dortmund
Serie A: Roma (probably; definitely if DeAndre Yedlin goes there)
Ligue 1: Really no one; I've played as both Monaco and PSG, and it's horrible how they both have so much money and do nothing with it. If I ever do have one, it'll probably be someone like Lyon, Lille, or Saint-Etienne
Primeira Liga: (but Porto if I'm realistic and don't want disappointment for the rest of my life)

koook160 (Robert MacFarlane) said...

So basically Brazil tripped on its dick?

Michael Patison said...

I'm not sure how highly they thought of themselves, but this really wasn't a team that anybody normally would have said was a champion-elect. It was the home-field advantage that gave people reason to favor them, and it worked for a while. But from the get-go, nobody really had any illusions as to the true quality of the team. They weren't the tournaments best team, maybe not even in the top 5.

It's just a shame they had to go out so terribly. People are really being jerks about it, I think. If the USA had lost their decisive game 7-1, any American that cared at all would have been devastated, and rightly so. The English, not so much. They just want Roy Hodgson gone.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke: Ask me again when I review Bale.