Wednesday, July 22, 2020

5 Off My Head: Willem at Heart

The living legend Willem Dafoe turns 65 today, and even I, a staunch Dafoe supporter, feel as if I don't give him enough credit. We take him for granted dammit! The man's been turning in legendary performances for four going on five decades, and they're not all whack-jobs either -- although I admit I favor the whack-jobs -- the last thing I saw him in just a few weeks ago was Abel Ferrera's Tommaso and he plays a totally normal dude in that, and rivetingly. 

Okay so the sight of him playing a normal dude does almost always carry with it a sense of frisson, as if he might go loco at any moment, but that's because he's just so electric on-screen. Even in something like The Florida Project -- we all immediately think of the scene where he chases off the pedophile, right? His eyes, even in their kindest moments, shoot sparks. 

Anyway narrowing down a list of faves from him for this here birthday was a challenge today just because a true list of faves would be way, way longer than the one I've come up with below, and would court those smaller performances alongside his grand statements. But I love me a grand statement too much; that's on me. Thank goodness we've got Willem out here making 'em, and how.

My 5 Favorite Willem Dafoe Performances

"Look at ye, handsome lad with eyes bright as a lady."
Bobby Peru, Wild at Heart
"Speaking of Jack, One eyed Jack's yearning
to go a peeping in a seafood store!"
"Acorns don't cry, you know that as well as I do."
"If I was a woodcutter, I'd cut.
If I was a fire, I'd burn. But I'm a heart and I love.
That's the only thing I can do."
Max Schreck, Shadow of the Vampire
"I feed like an old man pees.
Sometimes all at once, sometimes drop by drop."

What are your favorite Willem Dafoe performances?


Trey said...

The Life Aquatic!

Pierce said...

Max Schreck in Shadow of the Vampire.

Anonymous said...

Grand Budapest Hotel

ChubChuck said...

Live And Die In L.A. !!!

nightflyer001 said...

Max Schreck in Shadow of the Vampire. How did he not get an Oscar for it I'll never know.