Part 2, Continuing the Story…

After ten more films he was given nominations for “Best Actor” and the 87th greatest performance for playing the leading role in The Searchers.

In later years John Wayne was recognized as an American resource; his critics (who based their scores on his actions in politics and performances) began to view him with much more respect. Abbie Hoffman, the radical of the 1960’s, paid him a tribute to Wayne’s singularity. Vincent Canby, a movie critic, reviewed one of John Wayne’s movies called The Cowboy’s. Vincent did not like the movie in particular, but wrote in regards to John Wayne a complement to his acting: “Wayne is, of course, marvelously indestructible, and he has become an almost perfect father figure.” Yet, in irony, John Wayne (before he had been noted as a fatherly figure) was a “symbolic male figure, a man of impregnable virility and the embodiment of simplistic virtues, packaged in an enormous frame.”

He had a handsome, hearty face; with crinkles around eyes that gave a look of a man of action, an outdoor man who chafed at a settled life. He was a man of few words on screen. When he shambled into view, audiences sensed the arrival of “coiled vigor” awaiting only provocation to be sprung. His demeanor and his roles were those of a man who did not look for trouble “but was relentless in tackling it when it affronted him”. This screen presence emerged particularly under the ministrations of directors John Ford and Howard Hawks.

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Published in: on October 20, 2008 at 9:05 pm  Leave a Comment  
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