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January 03, 2011

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EOTW

Got the news on PP this morning via Twitter and was sad. He looked sick in INCEPTION, but he was playing a dying man but I finally got around to seeing THE TOWN this weekend (via the spectacular BD) and he looked gaunt as hell in that flick, sickly, in fact. Always liked when he would pop up in flicks and was great when he was menacing or else.

That Fuzzy Bastard

Postlethwaite will be much, much missed. I remember watching Romeo + Juliet, and when the Friar scenes appeared, suddenly sitting up and muttering: "Woah---there's an actual ACTOR in the cast!" This isn't really a knock on anyone else in R+J, so much as a reflection on the difficulties of casting PP---he was so good, so natural, so effortless with his handling of text, that he left everyone else looking forced.

bill

"Fuck cancer" is one of the few memes, or whatever you'd call that sort of thing, that I can offer my full and unambiguous support.

I had no idea about Postlethwaite. I'm stunned.

MK

It's criminal that "Distant Voices, Still Lives" isn't available in the U.S. - it was briefly 'available' in its entirety on YouTube, and I'm sorry to say, that's the only way I've been able to see it.

warren oates

@MK -- DISTANT VOICES, STILL LIVES is of course available in a solid standard def release from the BFI. The whole Davies set is worth it and definitely in that rarefied strata of DVDs that justify going region-free all by themselves. In the past, Criterion has hinted some Davies may be on the way, but there's no timetable.

Paul Duane

A Terence Davies blu-ray box set would be a beautiful thing. Postlethwaite's performance as the Dad in DVSL was the first time I became aware of him. His and Freda Dowie's (and, in fact, pretty much everybody's) work in it goes very far beyond naturalism but feels so perfectly real that when Postlethwaite's screen persona resolved itself as, more often than not, the gentle, craggy wisdom he displayed in the likes of Brassed Off, it came as quite a surprise to me. I'd thought the violent Neanderthal character Davies had coaxed out of him had to be the real man. Needless to say, in real life, he was anything but, and my own two tangential encounters with him were memorable for his generosity and warmth. He'll be very much missed.

Owain Wilson

Pete Postlethwaite scared the shit out of me in The Town. Brilliant actor.

preston

I first came to know of Postlethwaite's work in "In the Name of the Father." His Giuseppe was heart wrenching. I always looked out for him after that role. RIP.

nrh

It's not Distant Voices - and this is slightly off topic - but the first "trilogy" by Terence Davies is viewable online at BFI's Daily Motion page:

http://www.dailymotion.com/user/BFIfilms/1

jbryant

Wonder when Postlethwaite was diagnosed? I thought he looked to be at death's door in AEON FLUX five years ago, but it could've been the role (no one would look healthy in that get-up).

Anne Francis hit me hard, because it was unexpected. I know 80 isn't young, but I hadn't heard she was ill. Most younger film buffs probably know her only from FORBIDDEN PLANET. She's also in BLACKBOARD JUNGLE, BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK and FUNNY GIRL. She and FORBIDDEN PLANET co-star Walter Pidgeon gave great performances in their other 1956 film, THE RACK. As these titles suggest, she was rarely the lead in a film, but my generation grew up with her as a ubiquitous TV presence (including some Alfred Hitchcock episodes), most famously as the star of the rather short-lived but long-remembered HONEY WEST. I suspect that show gave many a young boy their first grown-up thoughts, if you know what I mean. Mostly off both screens since the '90s, she probably means little to anyone under 40 or so, but I'll always remember her fondly. RIP

jwarthen

Watching the 1994 series MARTIN CHUZZLEWIT recently, I was delighted when Postlethwaite popped-up in a color-role, and even adorned in preposterous mutton-chop facial hair, his remarkable mien brought Daniel Day-Lewis' present-day features to mind immediately. The film-makers who pressed PP for IN THE NAME... were more prescient
than anyone could have known at the time.

Pete Segall

"I thought he looked to be at death's door in AEON FLUX five years ago, but it could've been the role (no one would look healthy in that get-up)."

He looked pretty frail in Alien3, too, and that was nearly 20 years ago. I don't think being ill was responsible for that. His gauntness was always one of the most striking things about him, a slightness of figure that could be used to belie a powerful or frightening (sometimes both) spirit. He's one I'll really miss.

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