Hollywood now seems littered with models, whilst traditional film/stage actors are sadly few and far between. For me personally, Philip Seymour Hoffman represented one of the few remaining actors who have spent years honing their craft and would only make that big Hollywood blockbuster to finance their true passion of acting in a small theatre somewhere away from the red carpets and attention that so many of todays disillusioned stars crave
Philip Seymour Hoffman once tellingly revealed that he found acting ‘torturous’
In an interview with Shortlist he said: “You have to [make people] believe that you’re 70 years old and that you’re lying at the death-bed of your daughter that you haven’t seen in 30 years.
“There’s a certain amount of pain that goes into that. So torturous is just being dramatic. It’s painful. It’s not easy.”
“It’s painful for anybody. That’s just part of the job of being an actor. It’s one of the things you have to do. Every job has those things that are tough.”
Such a great talent from a seemingly tortured man and the news of his death today is incredibly tragic and I find myself looking back at his most memorable performances.
Almost Famous “The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what we share with someone else when we’re uncool.”
As a massive music fan, it is probably no surprise that Cameron Crowe’s Almost Famous blew me away and one of the reasons was down to the the small yet unforgettable role of Lester Bangs.
Hard Eight “Gonna Light The Cigarette”
Paul Thomas Anderson had Philip Seymour Hoffman in all his films with the exception of There Will Be Blood, but we should have known early on what was on the horizon. In Hard Eight, we get to see his character for only one scene, but you will remember it forever. Considering most films are forgotten by the time you reach the car park, this is something quite special.
Hard Eight was a fantastic underrated film, that is filled with great performances and the scene “Gonna Light The Cigarette” will always be remembered as an early glimpse of the troubled characters that he played with ease.
Magnolia – Phil Parma Tracks Down Frank T.J. Mackie Scene
No matter how small the scene, he had the ability to grab and hold your attention, the Oscars may have inexplicably snubbed Magnolia but once again, all eyes were on one actor.
Just for saying “shut the f*ck up” to Adam Sandler!
Brant, The Big Lebowski’s Butler
Once again a lesson in character acting from Hoffman who as a small role as Brant, (Jeffrey Lebowski’s butler) and nails the performance instantly with the line “You didn’t go to college…”
Gust Avrakotos, Charlie Wilson’s War
Hoffman is unforgettable as a crazed, foul-mouthed CIA agent and also manages to completely outshine Tom Hanks
One of the truly great scenes to grace modern cinema.
Blackmail’s Better (The Ides of March)
This’s the scene in ‘The Ides of March’ where the character of Philip Seymour Hoffman admonishes Ryan Gosling’s for the naïve mistake of ‘meeting with the enemy.’ Hoffman’s says it amounts to disloyalty, and adds rather sanctimoniously that loyalty is the only ‘currency’ that has any real value in politics. Alas, Gosling’s proves him the more naïve among the two— and that blackmail, not loyalty, is more valuable in politics. The film’s denouement says so….
Boogie Nights – Hoffman – I’m a idiot
Mission: Impossible 3
The closest we will ever get to a chilling James Bond style villain performance from Hoffman.
These are just a handful of films that I will forever remember Philip Seymour Hoffman for and as a tribute to both him and his work, I could have quite easily posted clips to another 10 characters that he has played over the years.
In almost every film he has appeared, he effortlessly held your attention in some of the most memorable performances that I have ever seen, not to mention outshining Hollywood’s elite with powerhouse performances.
There are so many reasons that this Philip Seymour Hoffman will be missed by anyone that has seen his films.