Monday, 17 April 2017

Alternate Best Supporting Actor 1984: Tim Roth in The Hit

Tim Roth did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Myron in The Hit.

Tim Roth plays junior hitman Myron to John Hurt's Braddock tasked with taking mob informant Willie (Terence Stamp) from Spain to meet his end in Paris. Tim Roth, fitting to a screen debut, gives a very eager performance that is also rather fitting to his role as first time on the job hitman Myron. Unlike the calm and collected Braddock, Roth portrays the right irrationality from the outset portraying Myron getting far too much of a kick at capturing poor Willie. Roth's performance works by sort of his lack of tacking things seriously, or more accurately professionally in any way. Roth plays it mostly as Myron treating the whole thing like a thrill seeking experience more than anything else. In the early scenes there is a severe lack of understanding towards Willie as even Roth's grin seems to scream "Yeah let's kill this guy", but with no real depth to this sentiment whatsoever.

Roth brings the right sort of bluster to his performance which is all show in the right way. In the way he walks and talks he's a great contrast to the consummate professional Braddock who is very low key. Roth brings the right lack of maturing in all that he does as he brandishes the gun like a kid playing an outlaw, not a real outlaw, the way he walks around with such a strut, and shows off all his weaponry is all that of kid playing show and tell. Roth, even in the scenes where Myron talks big against Willie, is properly not menacing since he plays it as all a put on by the young Myron. One of my favorite moments of his early on, reminiscent of Colin Farrell in In Bruges another first timer hitman, is when Braddock has to adjust the plan and go to Madrid in attempt to lose the authorities. Roth's terrific since his reaction is that of a spoiled brat annoyed that he's going have to wait for his "treat".

Roth's performance properly makes Myron a surface level guy since even when we are allowed a different side of Myron through another captive of a beautiful local Maggie (Laura del Sol), Roth doesn't truly show any depth in Myron. Myron does tend to the woman attempting to help her, but again even this Roth makes fairly juvenile. In that Roth focuses on that he is obviously just very much smitten by Maggie's beauty, and that even his more tender notions come from a very simple mindset. Roth after awhile is quite good in showing just how lacking Myron is in every quality by showing how quickly he forgets his facade of either the tough hitman or the caring one. Roth's work rightfully has the awkwardness of a young man who has no idea what he is doing at any time. I feel this is best summed up in his final scene where he refuses to kill, but again just as a sad sack loser with no real convictions. He's actually darkly hilarious in the stupid look that Roth wears as he fails to comprehend that he's made a dire mistake. This is an entertaining portrayal by Tim Roth as he adds a nice bit of character to the film. He technically is a bit overshadowed by Stamp and Hurt but not in bad way. Braddock and Willie are functioning really on different level, and Roth gives enjoyable turn as someone wholly out of his element even if he thinks otherwise.

53 comments:

Luke Higham said...

I like Tim Roth but he just can't seem to get above 4 stars for me.

Charles Heiston said...

I prefer him in Reservoir Dogs actually.

1. Stanton
2. Candy
3. McMillan
4. Elliot
5. Roth

Luke Higham said...

1. Stanton
2. McMillan
3. Candy
4. Elliott
5. Roth

Calvin Law said...

My favourite performance of Roth is easily The Hateful Eight, but he's actually a really consistent actor in general. This is no exception.

Calvin Law said...

Also, Louis, have you seen his Christie? He's actually quite good, no Attenborough but he's genuinely quite creepy. Nico Mirallegro is also good as egotistic Timothy Evans but has far less of a haunting emotional impact, and Samantha Morton is pretty good. The series is creepily atmospheric but nowhere near as nailbitingly horrifying as The original.

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: I found it hilarious, how everyone was going mad over Nico switching accents, between cockney in London and welsh in Wales when that was exactly how Tim Evans was.

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: I think given time, Mirallegro could be a talent for the future. Roth was very good but nothing could beat the original performances from Richard and John.

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: Mirallegro also has that Brando look about him.

Calvin Law said...

Luke: I agree, he showed lots of promise, it's just that he was competing against my #1 supporting performance of all-time.

Charles Heiston said...

There's no surpassing Attenborough and Hurt, both have places in my top 10 lists.

Luke Higham said...

Charles: I agree, it's impossible.

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: Have you seen The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas.

Calvin Law said...

Luke: Yes, and I did not care for it at all.

Luke Higham said...

Calvin: Only just finished it now and it's alright. I thought Thewlis stood out the most. Didn't like Farmiga that much and was surprised she won the BIFA award for it.

Louis Morgan said...

Calvin:

I have not as I couldn't quite muster the motivation since I couldn't see how you could top the original film and those central performances.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Have you watched any TV lately.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

I am watching Better Call Saul, will be watching Fargo, and I am unfortunately seeing Feud.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Your thoughts on Feud and the two leads.

Robert MacFarlane said...

And Molina.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

I suppose my "unfortunately" perhaps sounds a little too negative on my part, as I've noticed the episodes I tend to hate are the ones directed by Ryan Murphy since he camps it up to a painful level. The series on a whole is fairly flimsy though working mostly as sometimes interesting anecdotes while having a more mixed success in terms of offering any real insights into the central personalities. It struggles with tone, again most terribly in the Ryan Murphy episodes, coming off cartoonish at times. It's at its worst moments are at its most gossipy, it's at its best when it tries to actually understand the players as people.

Lange - (She gets a slight boost since the show also features one of the worst performances I've ever seen so she looks better by comparison. Lange though kind of goes with the flow of the show which is too often she devolves into camp, while having the occasional moment of real emotional resonance. She isn't convincing as Crawford in the least though. In that she over does the mannerisms while failing to find any notion of her appeal. When she focuses on trying to represent Crawford she fails most miserably. When she is just being sort of an aging actress she can be decent though. Her performance though always feels like an act and she struggles with the series trying to make us feel for Crawford yet laugh at her at the same time. )

Sarandon - (Sarandon doesn't really try to become Davis, which I'm fine with. She instead kind of gives the performance of Susan Sarandon in a Bette Davis style role. Sarandon has the stronger grasp on the tone as she always pulls back before going too big with the role even in the silliest moments given to her she does manage to ground herself. What she does particularly well is capture sort of that golden actress toughness which is essential to Davis. Again she's not Davis in the role nor does she really try to be instead she effectively creates that type of presence which is more important.)

Robert MacFarlane said...

For the performance you hate, do you mean Zeta-Jones?

Louis Morgan said...

Robert:

Molina - (Molina's actually a very welcome subdued factor in the series, and I think the Robert Aldrich scenes tend to be stronger since they avoid going into camp. Molina deserves credit, who doesn't mind cutting a slice of ham himself now and then, for giving a more modest turn fitting to Aldrich's position within the story. Molina though goes further in that he manages to create such a sympathetic presence, despite the character flaws, by portraying such earnest frustrations but also passions towards film making process. Some of the best scenes of the series are between him and Stanley Tucci, as the devoted "artist" against the cynical executives. Their back and forths are entertaining, but Molina goes further and is actually quite moving in portraying the director struggling with compromises so honestly.)

Louis Morgan said...

Robert:

That would be the one.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Thoughts on Zeta-Jones.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

Zeta-Jones - (This performance.......this performance....I'll refrain from cursing, but this performance frankly warrants it. Olivia De Havilland is not so freaking campy, jeez. You'd think she is a terrible actress through this performance representing her. Everything Zeta-Jones does is awful in the role with her intense phoniness which I guess was her point, yet that is not a representation of De Havilland in interviews or in her performances. Furthermore she's too fake even that was the point, it's horrible to the point that no one could take her company would assume given how nothing she does seems natural even slightly. She does not come off like any human being that ever existed ever. Its....its....I don't like this performance.)

Luke Higham said...

Louis: I guess she's minus five stars then for complete awfulness. :)

What would it take for Matt Damon to get a five from you.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Could you watch Champions (1984). It's said to be one of John Hurt's significant performances from the 1980s.

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

For him it might to go out of his comfort zone again as did in the Informant.

I'll try.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Have you seen The Bostonians yet.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Or Iceman.

Robert MacFarlane said...

Louis: Would you consider Elliott Gould in The Touch and The Long Goodbye the biggest gap between best and worst performance of an actor? Or do you have others in mind?

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

Not yet.

Robert:

It could be. Though another one I always come back to in that regard is John Wayne in The Conqueror/The Searchers since he gave the performances the same year even.

Calvin Law said...

Louis: your thoughts on the soundtrack to Dragonheart.

Louis Morgan said...

Calvin:

The makings of an Oscar winning score if it had been for any film not named Dragonheart. Randy Edelman must be the most underrated film composer of all time, mostly because his work tends to be in films where the score is the strongest aspect. His score here is such beautiful work fitting a truly grand fantastic epic, frankly better Drangonheart. The score is grandeur itself with its sweeping style through its blend of strings, and horns but with just the right touch of woodwinds to create such a masterful combination.

Michael Patison said...

1. 1. Stanton
2. Candy
3. McMillan
4. Elliot
5. Roth

Giuseppe Fadda said...

I've yet to watch Feud, but from the little I've seen Zeta-Jones looks quite terrible indeed. I tend to like Lange more than you though, so I look forward to her performance. Thoughts on Judy Davis, Jackie Hoffman and Alison Wright?

omar said...

1. Stanton
2. Candy
3. McMillan
4. Elliot
5. Roth

Louis:

What are your ratings and thoughts on Judy Davis and Peggy Ashcroft in Passage to India?
And what's your rating for Joaquin Phoenix in The Immigrant? I can't find him in both the leading and supporting rankings

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on these episodes of Batman:
Shadows of the Bat
Heart of Steel
I am the Night

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Your thoughts on each episode of Wolf Hall and the trailers for Detroit and American Assassin.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Your rating for Eddie Murphy in Coming To America.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: And your thoughts on the score from The Last Of The Mohicans.

Michael McCarthy said...

1. Harry Dean Stanton
2. Kenneth McMillan
3. Denholm Elliott
4. John Candy
5. Tim Roth

Luke Higham said...

1. Stanton
2. McMillan
3. Elliott
4. Candy
5. Roth

Louis: Your ratings for Bob Gunton in Matewan and Billy Crystal in The Princess Bride.

Luke Higham said...

Michael McCarthy: Your ratings for Stanton, McMillan (Dune & TPOGW), Sting, Candy and Elliott.

Charles Heiston said...

Robert: I think the biggest gap between best and worst performance of an actor is Jon Voight in Midnight Cowboy and Anaconda.

Louis Morgan said...

Giuseppe:

Davis - (Davis suffers for me because she appears most heavily in the Ryan Murphy directed episodes where you can almost hear him going "bigger bigger" off camera. She's playing Hedda Hopper in the mode not far off from Helen Mirren's take quite honestly, though with just a bit more humanity. She's somewhat entertaining in those bigger moments, but for me her best moments are when she gets to show a slightly different side to her such as when she's talking about her heart condition. She's really used mainly to be a caricature, but Davis does manage to transcend that just a bit.)

Hoffman - (She's purposefully very restricted in her performance in that character itself is suppose to be somewhat ridiculous to begin with. I actually do like Hoffman's performance though as she does the deadpan comedy quite well even if what she's working with isn't always great. Hoffman though does go just a tad further and she has strong moments in the margins where she suggests that her character really does care for Crawford's mental health.)

Wright - (Her subplot she got I do feel didn't quite work since it felt thrown in, and indeed it had no connection to reality. Wright though is pretty good in her part though in bringing properly not mannered performance that works well as a straight forward contrast presenting a character with just a less ludicrous mindset.)

Omar:

Ashcroft - (Kind of an Oscar winning may stay of the wise older woman though I've never felt that she stole the film as the reception of some suggests. She's brings sort of the right warmth and sense of history in her words. In addition she's more bluntly effective in her freak out scene without going over the top. It's a good performance though I don't feel that it stands out too much.)

Davis - (Davis's performance is a little curious in the way her character loses all perspective after the attack making it so we are never given a proper sense of what she's even going through. She's good though in her early scenes in just offering a quietly charming presence then later is quite good in depicting the immediate trauma of the event. Again though she's never given the chance to really explore what her character is going through even though she continues to appear in the film.)

Phoenix's performance is one I feel I need to re-watch to give a proper evaluation to.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Shadow of the Bat - (In terms of the set up it is quite intriguing to get into the idea of corruption. It doesn't quite go to anywhere all that special with that though since it is mostly forgotten to introduce Batgirl. It's not a bad episode, but even with that introduction there isn't anything that stands out about it other than the setup which a feels a little wasted by the ending.)

Heart of Steel - (The two parter is not an overly memorable pair. The villain is very derivative and there is nothing about the action or set pieces that are all that compelling. There is something to be had in the depiction of Barbara Gordon, but I'm holding onto that mostly since the rest of the episode is rather disposable.)

I am the Night - (This episode is not particularly good. The villain of the jazzman seems like an afterthought, and not a very good after thought. There's a reason he never appeared again. The whole depiction of Batman's guilt though comes off as a bit silly since he's so overt about it. A similair idea was much better handled in "Two-Face". The idea behind the episode is a good one but the execution is very weak.)

Luke:

I watched the episodes of Wolf Hall in fairly quick succession of three episodes bursts, so they aren't quite so distinct in my mind.

Detroit - (An amazing looking trailer in terms of capturing the atmosphere and intensity of such a situation which really is to be expected from Bigelow at this point. I will say, this isn't an an actual negative, my brain rejects the concept of Will Poulter in an adult role though both he and John Boyega look promising from the trailer.)

American Assassin - (Didn't really like the editing style of the trailer itself, and it struggled a bit in terms of what type of spy movie it's going to be. It seemed to waver between different realities within the trailer, hopefully its tone is more exact in the movie itself. I pretty much always like Keaton, not sure about O'Brien in the lead yet though. The trailer gave me The Accountant vibes, hopefully it will turn out better than that film did.)

Murphy - 3.5
Gunton - 4
Crystal - 3.5

Last of the Mohicans is never great piece work by Edelman. I ponder if James Horner got a little inspiration from the music for Braveheart. Edelman's music captures that similair style in that it has the greatness, the splendor if you will of a proper score for a film epic. It however has that pseudo-traditionalist styling in that gives an unmistakable life that also makes it so fitting to the story.

Robert MacFarlane said...

Louis: If Rick Moranis ever does movies again, do you think he'd work in a Wes Anderson joint? Also, what's your rating for him in Ghostbusters? I actually consider him the MVP.

Louis Morgan said...

Robert:

Anderson seems like the right fit for him. I could also see him fit in with the other Anderson, PTA. Like Joe Pesci, it feels like he's never coming back, though.

He's a 4 for me.

Calvin Law said...

I really really respect Moranis as both an actor and as a person.

Charles Heiston said...

Joe Pesci and Rick Moranis should've worked with the Coens Brothers.

ruthiehenshallfan99 said...

Does anyone else besides me really like Feud? The only part I really dislike is Zeta Jones. Not sure what she is doing.

Michael McCarthy said...

Luke: Haven't seen any of them yet honestly, it'll be a few weeks before I'm able to keep up with these the way I used to again.