Cliff Robertson, R.I.P.
Posted 11 September 2011 - 05:13 PM
I was most familiar with his TV work as Shame on Batman in the 1960s and as Dr. Michael Ranson on Falcon Crest in the 1980s. He also endeared himself to contemporary movie audiences during the last decade of his life by playing Uncle Ben in the Spider-Man movies.
I'm unfamiliar with his other movie work except for the one that counts:
Posted 12 September 2011 - 05:39 AM
He was also good in ‘Picnic’, where he held his own against the glorious (if too old for the part) William Holden, and ‘Charly’, for which he won an Oscar.
But my favorite of his roles is Joe Cantwell in ‘The Best Man’ from 1964, a cracking good political drama with a killer cast. It can’t be easy to stand out surrounded by the likes of Henry Fonda, Margaret Leighton, Mahalia Jackson (to the best of my memory she just sings, but when she does......), Lee Tracy -- I could go on and on about the superb cast -- but Robertson managed. I don’t know if it’s out on DVD but it used to turn up now and again on cable; definitely worth the time. After watching Robertson/Cantwell slime his way through 90 minutes of double dealing and political chicanery, you'll need to take a shower. First rate character acting.
Rest in peace.
Posted 12 September 2011 - 10:47 AM
I like The Best Man too, PeggyR. Very entertaining movie.
Other good Robertson titles: Underworld, USA. Obsession. He was also fine in support as Hugh Hefner in Star 80, swanning about in his jammies and wrinkling his nose at declasse Eric Roberts. Also good: his CIA man in Three Days of the Condor.
I haven't seen the TV movie A Man Without a Country for a gazillion years, but it made a strong impression on me back when and I remember Robertson as being excellent in it. Charly isn't my cup of tea but I'm pleased he got an Oscar no matter how.
Thanks for posting, miliosr. RIP.
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