Monday, 28 August 2017

Alternate Best Supporting Actor 1992: Graham Greene in Thunderheart

Graham Greene did not receive an Oscar nomination for portraying Walter Crow Horse in Thunderheart.

Thunderheart follows a murder investigation on an Native American reservation by the FBI, although the film is decent it never seems to reach the potential within its story.

Well before I get to another 25 year break, here is a different one. Before Graham Greene played a harried overworked police officer on a reservation in Wind River, he played one in this film. Although both films begin with the same basic premise, they differ very much in content and theme with this film following far more closely the greater implication of the murder here as the film is as much about the conflict between the FBI, the various factions of the reservation, with the murder just a starting point. Technically speaking Graham Greene's performance most directly relates to the murder though as we first meet him as he comes to pick up the body running afoul of FBI veteran Frank Coutelle (Sam Shepard) and novice investigator Ray Levoi (Val Kilmer) put on the mission due to his minor Sioux heritage. Any initial misunderstandings are cleared up though as Walter is revealed to the law on the reservation. Greene makes the right impact right off the bat though in his comical exasperation towards  Ray Levoi's over eagerness, and he establishes his approach to Walter.

Greene on one hand is quite entertaining in giving a quietly comedic performance, what he'd do again in his similair role in Wind River. Greene is able to find the right balance here though in his low key way of infusing some truly natural humor in the role. He never tries to be funny but rather just is. This is often just in his reactions towards Ray early on as he shows that Walter in no way expects Ray to be all that much help. Greene effectively delivers the way Walter goes about pestering Ray a bit early on in a way as he grants the character the right confidence in his peculiar sort of authority over the man. The moment where he pulls over Ray for speeding, though with the intention to speak to the man, Green though has the right sort of fun in the moment showing the bit of honest enjoyment that Walter gets out of mocking Ray a bit. Although Greene manages to be funny in the role that is in no way his point in the film, as he has the far more important part of being essentially Ray's guide into the world of the reservation helping him see an alternate view beyond what Coutelle tells him.

Greene makes Walter the moral guide of sorts to Ray, even though he is also the most entertaining character though even that Greene shows that his certain comic exasperation comes from a place of real pain over his thankless job in a terrible situation. After awhile Greene shows the little jokes, while always have a bit of genuine anger, eventually have a bit of wisdom in them as well. Greene finds the right balance in his performance showing Walter own devotion to his quest though he goes about it in his own way. Greene's terrific in the way he actually eases up a bit in his sort of trolling of Ray as the situation becomes more dire and Ray begins to learn the truth. Greene in his approach slowly brings a greater gravity and direct passion. Again not something that was not there before but Greene powerfully brings it to the forefront when it becomes the most important. He quite honestly delivers the transformation for Kilmer's character more than Kilmer himself, as he makes an impact through the way Walter reacts to the man making so much out of the respect for the man he reveals in his eyes. This is a strong performance by Graham Greene, and even though I think the film could have made an even better use of his character particularly in relation to Kilmer's, his work still stands as the highlight of the film.

72 comments:

Mitchell Murray said...

Greene has always been an enjoyable actor for me as there's just a relaxed screen presence to him I like. And while I can't defend his performance in "Dances With Wolves" as an all time great, I can at least tolerate his nomination.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Rating and thoughts on Kilmer and Shepard. Also your cast for a 1970's version of this film.

Calvin Law said...

Saw Their Finest. Inconsistent but packs quite the punch, and is pretty funny throughout.

Arterton: 3.5
Claflin: 3.5
Grant: 3
Goodman: 3
Stirling: 3.5
Huston: 2.5
Nighy: 4
Marsan: 3
McCrory: 3
Lacy: 3

Giuseppe Fadda said...

Louis what did you think of Catherine E. Coulson's performance in the third season of Twin Peaks? Because I thought she was absolutely heartbreaking.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Your rating for Gary Sinise in Ransom.

Calvin Law said...

Louis: your thoughts on James Tolkan in the Back to the Future series, and who did you prefer between Claudia Wells and Elisabeth Shue?

Mitchell Murray said...

Saw "Personal Shopper". It's an effectively bleak horror thriller, and Stewart is very good.. probably her best performance.

Anonymous said...

Louis what are your thoughts on Frank Langella in Dracula?

Charles Heiston said...

Louis: Your top 20 Marlon Brando acting moments.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the Baby Doll and Nothing to Fear episodes from Batman TAS.

Luke Higham said...

American Made
Cruise - 4.5
Gleeson - 3.5/4

94dfk1 said...

Luke: Need some time to ruminate on Gleeson? Oh and I'm glad Cruise is getting some positive feedback so far for his performance in the movie.

Luke Higham said...

94dfk1: Not really, he's on the border and I kind of wanted a bit more of him to be honest.

Luke Higham said...

I prefer Cruise in Edge Of Tomorrow, though this is still a very entertaining piece of work from him.

Anonymous said...

Louis: your top 20 al pacino and Joe pesci acting moments

Calvin Law said...

Yeah Gleeson just sort of disappeared in the third act. Liked him a lot though. Cruise is fantastic and I really liked a lot of the film, even if I really disliked the cinematography and some of the early structural issues.

Charles Heiston said...

Louis: Is Levitt a 3.5 or 4 for Looper.

Luke Higham said...

Charles: He's a 3.5. I think JGL's only 4 is The Lookout.

Robert MacFarlane said...

I think Louis would give JGL a higher grade for Brick. It's very reminiscent of Gould in The Long Goodbye.

Michael McCarthy said...

Speaking of The Long Goodbye, has anyone here seen Ray Donovan? I started it today, Elliott Gould is in it and his scenes have some fun Easter eggs for people who have seen The Long Goodbye.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Kilmer - 3(Thinking about it he's kind of the slight precursor to Brad Pitt a bit in that he did best with the rich character parts rather than as a traditional leading man. Kilmer's decent enough here in portraying just the general naivety that changes to genuine concern yet his performance never quite has the impact you feel it could have. In addition he is a bit overshadowed by both Greene and Shepard.)

Shepard - 3.5(I don't think he was ever bad. He's great in his first few scenes creating the hard edge needed creating the sense of this truly dominant veteran agent. Shepard controls the scenes as he should unfortunately the film basically drops the character. Every revelation is basically said about him rather than shown by Shepard, and the film unfortunately wastes him a bit.)

Ray Levoi: Scott Glenn
Frank Coutelle: Charlton Heston
Walter Crow Horse: Will Sampson

Giuseppe:

Devastating performance to watch and every moment of her work is absolutely harrowing. She brings again that off-beat fascinating quality in her work as she did in the original series yet now with the anguish of looking straight into the void. Every one of those scenes captures something you may have never seen before.

Luke:

4

Calvin:

Tolkan is hilarious every time he appears. As he delivers frankly the same intensity he has in his one scene in Serpico yet instead of being a vicious cop he's a school principal. Every moment though Tolkan brings it which is so much fun I particularly love "eat lead slackers". I will say, like Thomas F. Wilson, he also delivers an authentic western style performance in III rather than just throwing on a different accent.

I suppose Shue, but Wells didn't have too much to do.

Anonymous:

His performance is decent but he excels more in portraying the Lothario side of Dracula rather than creating a real sense of horror in his performance. He's really good at being the seductive romantic but he never delivers the edge needed to be truly startling in the role. He's half of it but not all of it.

Charles:

Brando:

1. Contender - On the Waterfront
2. Bar confrontation - On the Waterfront
3. Rape - A Streetcar Named Desire
4. Telling Edie the Truth - On the Waterfront
5. Learning about Sonny - The Godfather
6. Errand Boy - Apocalypse Now
7. The Mortician - The Godfather
8. "Honorable Men" - Julius Caesar
9. Finding Charlie - On the Waterfront
10. Stella - A Streetcar Named Desire
11. The Horror - Apocalypse Now
12. Confronting Friendly - On the Waterfront
13. A Second Death - Superman II: Donner Cut
14. Meeting Edie - On the Waterfront
15. Napoleonic Code - A Streetcar Named Desire
16. Confronted by Father Barry - On the Waterfront
17. Meeting the Heads - The Godfather
18. Waiting for the doctor - A Streetcar Named Desire
19. Johnny Fontane - The Godfather
20. Caesar's corpse - Julius Caesar

Anonymous:

Pacino:

11. Phone call - Scarecrow
12. Birthday party - The Godfather Part II
13. Saving Vito - The Godfather
14. "You broke my heart" - The Godfather Part II
15. Selling the property - Glengarry Glen Ross
16. Trying to lighten the mood - Scarecrow
17. Lying to Kay - The Godfather
18. His son - Donnie Brasco
19. Confession - The Godfather Part III
20. Discussion of Fathers - The Insider

Pesci:

11. Beat Down - Raging Bull
12. Opening Argument - My Cousin Vinny
13. Make that coffee to go - Goodfellas
14. Interrupted Narration - Casino
15. Taking Jake to Vicky - Raging Bull
16. His Scene - The Good Shepard
17. Shooting Spider - Goodfellas
18. "You're afraid of the dark" - Home Alone
19. Hunting prospects - My Cousin Vinny
20. Back seat murder - Goodfellas

Anonymous said...

Louis: your top 20 julianne moore and john travolta acting moments

94dfk1 said...

Louis: Who are some other contemporary actors who you think are comparable to Russell Crowe in the sense that they are actually better in leading roles rather than supporting ones? The opposite of Kilmer and Pitt, so to speak.
Crowe does seem a little unnatural whenever he's not the lead.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Your top 10 Oscar winning speeches.

Anonymous said...

Louis: Your top 10 worst Oscar speeches.

Mitchell Murray said...

Best: Geoffrey Rush for "Shine", Joe Pesci for "Goodfellas", Ben Affleck and Matt Damon for "Good Will Hunting", Forest Whitaker for "The Last King Of Scotland", Marion Cotillard for "La Vie On Rose"

Worst: George Clooney for "Syriana", Viola Davis for "Fences", Patricia Arquette for "Boyhood"

Calvin Law said...

Louis: thoughts on the episode 'Witness' from Better Call Saul.

RatedRStar said...

Joe Pesci was just amazing lol =D haha, he was so certain he would lose lol.

RatedRStar said...

Melissa Leo for The Fighter was quite embarrassing and fake I think lol.

Robert MacFarlane said...

I loved Mahershala Ali's speech.

ruthiehenshallfan99 said...

Ones that come to mind are Don Ameche's and Hattie McDaniel's.

Luke Higham said...

RatedRStar:
Best: Michael Caine (2000)
Worst: Cuba Gooding Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow (1999), Halle Berry (2002) and Sean Penn (2004)

Luke Higham said...

*Cuba Gooding Jr. (1997)

ruthiehenshallfan99 said...

For Best I mean.

Luke Higham said...

I remember liking Rylance, hell I even loved his little speech before presenting Supporting Actress this year.

Robert MacFarlane said...

I didn't watch Rylance's speech. I ran into the bathroom because I was too upset about Stallone losing.

Anonymous said...

Robert: Do you still feel upset that Sly didn't win?

Robert MacFarlane said...

Anonymous: Not as much now, but I still think he should of won in a landslide from that lineup.

Anonymous said...

Definately not a landslide lol, I actually think with The Revenant picking up so much steam and with Creed a measly one nomination, Tom Hardy was definately third in the voting ahead of Ruffalo and Bale.

RatedRStar said...

Michael Caine was great, amazing how that was Tom Cruises last nomination.

RatedRStar said...

I honestly dont mind Cuba Gooding Jrs speech simply because it was fun to see everyones reaction like Steve Martin and James Woods.

Luke Higham said...

I don't have an issue with his speech actually and the music does amplify it, but I felt it was disrespectful of the producers to give an acting winner only 20-30 seconds for a speech.

Calvin Law said...

I loved Rylance, and his speech so I didn't mind Stallone's loss as much as I would have had say, Ruffalo won.

My favourite recent speeches:

Christoph Waltz's two wins.
Viola Davis.
Haing S. Ngor.
William Hurt.
Anne Bancroft a la Joan Crawford (guilty pleasure).
Jodie Foster and Anthony Hopkins.
DDL for There Will Be Blood.
Mahershala Ali.
Cuba Gooding Jr. (dislike the performance but it was a very heartwarming speech)
Joe Pesci.
Michael Caine.
Frances McDormand.

Calvin Law said...

And also, Marisa Tomei.

RatedRStar said...

I find it pretty funny that Brenda Fricker presented Pesci with his Oscar lol only to throw birdseed at him when she met him and Daniel Stern in New York =D lol.

Matt Mustin said...

My favourite Oscar speech ever is Michael Caine's, although I also really love Jeremy Irons' "Thank you David Cronenberg."

Michael McCarthy said...

As much as I genuinely loved him in Manchester by the Sea, Casey Affleck's speech was pretty bad.

Charles Heiston said...

Joe Pesci's spech is a classic to me. Although Caine & Ameche are also great speeches.

Anonymous said...

I dont think anybody really expected Casey Affleck to give a good speech, I was dreading his speech, he is clearly very uncomfortable in interviews and on the public stage.

Anonymous said...

I can remember when Affleck won the Oscar and he was getting battered everywhere by social media, I even get the feeling a lot of people were not happy that he won, Denzel Washington my god that was one despondent face he had.

Matt Mustin said...

Anonymous: Denzel looked like that the whole night, it wasn't because of Affleck.

Robert MacFarlane said...

Affleck's speech was only mildly less awkward than the photo ops afterwards. The photo of him and the other winners is comedy gold.

94dfk1 said...

I really do like Affleck in Manchestah by the Sea but his speech went exactly the way I thought it was going to haha.

Robert: A quick Google Image search has proven your hypothesis to be true. He tried hard to fit in with Stone, Davis and Ali haha.

Omar Franini said...

Louis: your thoughts on You Were Never Reqlly Here trailer?

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Moore:

1. Custody - Boogie Nights
2. Shooting the first scene - Boogie Nights
3. Stairwell breakdown - Game Change
4. Speech - Still Alice
5. New Year - Boogie Nights
6. First Interview - Game Change
7. Train Station - Far From Heaven
8. Explaining it how it feels - Still Alice
9. Mothering All - Boogie Nights
10. First Speech - Game Change
11. Forbidden Affair - Far From Heaven
12. Failed suicide - Still Alice
13. Being Cheered Up - Game Change
14. Fight - Short Cuts
15. Diagnosis - Still Alice
16. Fight with husband - Far From Heaven
17. Confrontation - Game Change
18. Children's diagnosis - Still Alice
19. Strange Art - The Big Lebowski
20. Recommendation - Don Jon

Travolta:

11. Should be Forgiven - Pulp Fiction
12. Killed himself by accident - Saturday Night Fever
13. Coming to the "rescue" - Blow Out
14. Shooting Marvin in the face - Pulp Fiction
15. Nothing Left - A Civil Action
16. Movie Idea - Get Shorty
17. Illiteracy - Primary Colors
18. The Hair - Saturday Night Fever
19. A Big mistake - Pulp Fiction
20. Chills multiplying - Grease

Tahmeed:

Haing S. Ngor
Louise Fletcher
William Hurt
Jeremy Irons
Michael Caine
Don Ameche
Mark Rylance
John Wayne
Joe Pesci
Tommy Lee Jones

Anonymous:

James Cameron
George Clooney
Melissa Leo
Casey Affleck
Gwyneth Paltrow
Julia Roberts
Sean Penn (Mystic River)
Kate Winslet
Warren Beatty
Viola Davis (Just for the only profession line)

Louis Morgan said...

Omar:

Would have preferred if there had not been that possible plot development spoiler within the trailer. Phoenix looks promising enough though this is, other than that previous mentioned spoiler, is more an atmosphere trailer which in that regard seems like the film has potential, and not too much can be taken from it overall though.

Deiner said...

Going back to the best Oscar acceptance speeches, Ruth Gordon's has to be there for me.

Anonymous said...

Louis: your top 20 barry pepper and harrison ford acting moments

ruthiehenshallfan99 said...

Looking through Louis' favorite and least favorite Oscar acceptance speech's. I definitely agree with them... Never realized how awkward Robert's speech was.

Anonymous said...

Louis:Thoughts on your 10 worst oscar speeches.

Luke Higham said...

Louis: Your thoughts on Billy Zane in Orlando.

Calvin Law said...

Louis: thoughts on the Better Call Saul episode 'Witness', and Jimmy's speech to Chuck about how he'll die alone at the beginning of Sunk Costs.

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Thoughts on the Better Call Saul episode "Pimento". Always found its final scene brilliant.

Anonymous said...

Finally watched the Death Note movie. My God, it's terrible.
Wolff: 1
Stanfield: 3
Qualley: 2
Dafoe: 3,5 (Easily the best part of the film. Not as good as Brian Drummond though)
Whigham: 3

Robert MacFarlane said...

I honestly thought Dafoe was kind of phoned-in. Like, not bored or anything, but you could tell everything was the first good take. I guess I reacted stronger to Stanfield because how much more committed he was than the rest of his cast mates (sand Wigham).

Tahmeed Chowdhury said...

Louis: Your thoughts on the following monologues-

The Barber's speech-The Great Dictator
George's first confrontation with Potter- It's A Wonderful Life
Jule's explanation of Ezekiel 25:17 to Ringo-Pulp Fiction
Friends, Romans, Countrymen-Julius Caesar (1953)
The story of their lives- Paris, Texas

Anonymous said...

Louis: What are your top 10 Stephen King adaptations?

Calvin Law said...

Jeremy Saulnier is directing True Detective season 3 with Mahershala Ali starring.

Robert MacFarlane said...

Hopefully it's more along the lines of Blue Ruin than Green Room.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

Pepper:

1. "You gonna be okay?" - The Three Burials
2. Begging - The Three Burials
3. "Neither of us will see Judge Parker" - True Grit
4. The Killing - The Three Burials
5. If you make another lie - True Grit
6. Snake bite treatment - The Three Burials
7. "Bold Talk For a one-eyed fat man" - True Grit
8. "You will not get paid" - True Grit
9. The Smell - The Three Burials
10. Abusive fool - The Three Burials
11. Frank attacks Monty - 25th Hour
12. Helping Peel - The Three Burials
13. Frank tries to comfort Monty - 25th Hour
14. Repair - The Three Burials
15. Tank - Saving Private Ryan
16. Thoughts on the air - 25th Hour
17. Clocktower sniper - Saving Private Ryan
18. With his wife - The Three Burials
19. Frank at work - 25th Hour
20. Execution - Green Mile

Harrison Ford:

1. Insisting Nuclear War has happened - The Mosquito Coast
2. Opening Quest - Raiders of the Lost Ark
3. "I know" - Empire Strikes Back
4. Let it go - The Last Crusade
5. "It's true all of it" - The Force Awakens
6. Negotiating with the guerrillas - The Mosquito Coast
7. Meeting his dad again - The Last Crusade
8. Dealing with Greedo - Star Wars
9. Almost drowning - The Mosquito Coast
10. Quiet Talk - The Last Crusade
11. Trying to take the recording - The Conversation
12. Versus the corrupt cops - Witness
13. Batty's death - Blade Runner
14. Extreme prejudice - Apocalypse Now
15. Finding Marion again - The Mosquito Coast
16. "Prepare to meet Kali in hell" - Temple of Doom
17. Confronting the jerks - Witness
18. Having his plan rejected - The Mosquito Coast
19. Talk with Belloq - Raiders of the Lost Ark
20. Confronting the reverend - The Mosquito Coast

Calvin:

Well those are two great choices in regards to True Detective.

Witness - (It's the episode that finally fulfills some promises particularly in bringing the brothers conflict to a proper head, and finally bringing that tension together in a effective way. Additionally it has a great, if very low key return to an old favorite)

That speech is a downright incredible moment for Odenkirk in that you see all the bitterness and anger of feeling the betrayal. It goes deeper than just being mad though as the sense of the loyal brother who always looked up to his older brother, there is a really sense of hurt in it that makes it so powerful.

Louis Morgan said...

Anonymous:

James Cameron - (Egotism incarnate, uttering your own line and that line being "I'm the King of the world" is a bit much to take.)

George Clooney - (Okay this one is just going too far nothing being a bit proud of what you do, but there's going too far. You're curing cancer, just take a step back.)

Melissa Leo - (This plays into her whole thing at that time where she just went too far into the game that it became too obvious and too ridiculous. Also, a common problem with all the precursors, acting really surprised after winning almost everything else is a bit hard to believe.)

Casey Affleck - (Not surprising really, mumbly and awkward, and not in an endearing way. The seemingly underlying tension in certain reactions doesn't help matters.)

Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts - (Similar where, yeah being joyful is fine, but there is always the potential to go too far. Well here are two examples of that.)

Sean Penn - (The guy who seems so too cool for school, but isn't cool, so he just comes off as miserable.)

Kate Winslet - (Again just sort of if you saw all of her speeches, which she did several, it just wore thin unfortunately. It's why giving a comic Globes speech is really best, hey I'll grant that they don't know they're going to win an Oscar that early.)

Warren Beatty - (Expectations I suppose, I mean where's that charm, I hear he has though I have trouble seeing. It's just rambling ineffective speech.)

Viola Davis - (Again just that one line. Again nothing wrong with some pride, but that one line again took it too far.)

Louis Morgan said...

Luke:

Somewhat tolerable Zaniness but he's mostly there to smile without really having any substance. Zane can do that, even if it really isn't all that much.

Tahmeed:

Pimento - (Although I do feel there were too many repetitions that delivered that moment, the climax is terrific as written and especially performed by both Odenkirk as you understand immediately both Jimmy's sense of betrayal and McKean delivering Chuck's bitter anger over years of feeling that he's the better though less liked son.)

The Barber's Speech - (An outstanding piece work by Chaplin as a writer and director. It's an immediate yet powerful switch as he so passionately delivers those profound words, particularly that man is not a machine, where one can truly feel the weight of its connection to what was going on in the world at that time.)

George's First Confrontation - (I love the speech and how Stewart delivers it because there is not a hint of sanctimony in the writing or performance. It is not words or passion of this idealist but rather just of a good man stating what is right in this straight way. It lays down the truth with such honesty yet feels all the greater with the certain reluctance within the confrontation.)

Jule's Explanation - (Another one that fire on both cylinders as I love how low key Jackson is in the explanation as he suggests the man understanding the words himself finally as he explains it to Ringo. It works especially well in contrast as there is less of an overt passion, but rather an understated understanding of what it means to really be the good shepherd.)

Friends, Romans, Countryman - (What a speech for all ages, and a performance to match the words from Brando. It's an amazing piece as it manages to be this perfect piece of subversion of the funeral speech, as it slowly and so effectively becomes a call for arms and revenge. The use of "honorable men" is particularly genius as the praise becomes this clever criticism. Again Brando captures this complication of it all, but I love that, although Mark Antony is manipulating the people, he shows the emotion to be absolutely genuine in regards to his sorrow for the loss of Caesar.)

The Story of Their Lives - (Sheer perfection from Stanton, and such a incredible scene as it makes just a single man speaking in such a simple room wholly transfixing. Although we've known sort of what happened Stanton lays it out in such a vulnerable and honest way that makes you feel every moment of their life together.)

Anonymous:

films only.

1. The Shawshank Redemption
2. Misery
3. Dolores Claiborne
4. The Green Mile
5. Stand by Me
6. The Dead Zone
7. Carrie
8. The Mist
9. The Shinning
10. The Running Man