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Actors you watch, no matter what the film is about

Posted: May 20th, 2007, 8:21 am
by knitwit45
"It would be interesting to name that handful of actors or directors whose name on a movie draws viewers as well as those whose stellar or supporting presence makes one pause, even when the film is less than wonderful". Moira said it best, but I will try to get this going.

Are there any particular actors or directors, whose name alone will prompt you to watch a movie? I remember my parents discussing which movie they wanted to see on their Friday night "Date Night". It was a "Ronald Colman", or a "Judy Garland" movie, not the title.

Tom Hanks comes to mind, for me. If he's in it, I will watch it, even when it's not a very good movie. How about you?


Posted: May 20th, 2007, 9:43 am
by knitwit45
I agree with you, except for Brian DePalma. His name runs me off, rather than draw me in. Could you tell me some of his movies, I might be completely wrong. I just associate his name with gore and violence (not exactly this old gal's cup of tea)

thanks, John


Posted: May 20th, 2007, 12:35 pm
by mrsl
I have to list them:


Robert Mitchum
Cary Grant
Gregory Peck
Jimmy Stewart
Randolph Scott
John Wayne

Greer Garson
Olivia DeHaviland
Claudette Colbert
Shirley Temple


Robert Redford
George Clooney
Hugh Grant

Julia Roberts
Sandra Bullock
Charlise Theron


John Ford
Budd Boeticher

Crossovers: From then to now, first as actors, then directors:

Clint Eastwood
Ron Howard

These are all repeats, e.g. I may have already seen the movie, but I will watch again, and again. There are others like Henry Fonda, and Jane Russell that I will watch, but often that once is enough.


Posted: May 20th, 2007, 12:57 pm
by ken123
For Directors John Ford - everything over & over again. Hawks, Walsh, Borzage, Siodmak,Wyler,Wilder, Anthony Mann,and Curtiz alot of their work time and time again, but not everything. 8)

Posted: May 20th, 2007, 7:27 pm
by knitwit45
Thanks for the list, John. I knew there was a reason I don't care for DePalma..."Scarface" was my first, last and only encounter with the man. I found it to be the most obscene movie I've ever had to sit thru (a first date, no less!) I'm not talking about the language, but the horrendous, sadistic violence. (The date didn't work out, either...) I will try Obsession. Who was in Mission to Mars? Can you tell I don't get out much???

But thanks for the list. I think my favorite directors are John Ford, Hitchcock, Billy Wilder comedies.

Posted: May 20th, 2007, 8:24 pm
by bobhopefan1940
Harold Lloyd, Cary Grant, Fred Astaire, Lew Ayres, Charlie Chaplin, Robert Montgomery, Judy Garland, Ginger Rogers, Buster Keaton. None of the recent actors... There's no actor/actress today that could draw me to the theatre simply on their star power. Adrian Brody and Johnny Depp come the closest, I guess.

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 11:26 am
by MissGoddess
Gary Cooper
Spencer Tracy
Clark Gable
Robert Montgomery
Frank Sinatra
Robert Mitchum
William Powell
Brian Keith
Errol Flynn
Humphrey Bogart
John Wayne (except most war movies)

Vivien Leigh
Myrna Loy
Ava Gardner
Carole Lombard
Marilyn Monroe
Jean Harlow
Lana Turner
Gene Tierney

Russell Crowe is the closest today to having any real "pull" with me---I at least will carefully look into what he is doing next, and if it doesn't look like it will be another romantic comedy or Master and Commander Part Deux, I probably will go to see it.

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 11:37 am
by movieman1957
John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Jimmy Stewart, Spencer Tracy, Cary Grant,
Jean Arthur, Ginger Rogers. Directors - John Ford and Hitchcock.

Up to a certain point in their career Laurel and Hardy. Mainly as I have seen their later works and when the studios took away their creativity it was pretty sad.

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 11:41 am
by MissGoddess
I forgot to post the directors whose work I'd love to see every example of: John Ford, Ernst Lubitsch and Alfred Hitchcock.

Re: Actors you watch, no matter what the film is about

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 11:48 am
by dfordoom
knitwit45 wrote: Are there any particular actors or directors, whose name alone will prompt you to watch a movie?
Greta Garbo. Jean Harlow. Barbara Stanwyck. Dirk Bogarde.

As for directors: Hitchcock, Fritz Lang, Joseph H. Lewis, Jacques Tourneur.

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 4:05 pm
by pktrekgirl

Gary Cooper
Errol Flynn
Rudolph Valentino
Ronald Colman
Humphrey Bogart
Spencer Tracy
Clark Gable
Charlie Chaplin
William Powell
Montgomery Clift
James Cagney
Gregory Peck
Charles Boyer

Barbara Stanwyck
Myrna Loy
Kay Francis
Olivia deHavilland
Jean Arthur
Ann Harding
Marlene Dietrich
Jean Harlow
Bette Davis
Carole Lombard
Ginger Rogers

Recent actors/actresses:

Johnny Depp (IMO the most talented actor around today...and I thought this WAY before it was 'cool' to like him - at a time when he had been written off as 'quirky'. I loved him partially because he WAS quirky!)

Hugh Grant (my guilty pleasure :P )

Posted: May 21st, 2007, 5:48 pm
by moira finnie
These are the the guys and gals who came to mind as eminently watchable whenever and wherever:
Ronald Colman
Errol Flynn
Roger Livesey
Leslie Howard
Jean Gabin
Morgan Freeman
Ethel Barrymore
John Barrymore
Lloyd Nolan
Sylvia Sidney
Bette Davis
(except in the later work)
Kenneth Branagh

I'm sure that there are more, but that's all for now.

Nancy, I think that you might like De Palma's Obsession, since it's probably the director's finest homage to Hitchcock, with a beautiful Bernard Herrmann score and some interesting, if rather disturbing romance in the film, heightened by the gauzy cinematography of Vilmos Zsigmond.

I know what you mean about associating bad first dates with certain movies. My first real date ever was to see Rocky, which I hated almost as much as the hormonely distressed kid creeping up on me in the darkened movie house. The poor lad didn't even understand what the heck I was talking about when I pointed out to him that Somebody Up There Likes Me and City for Conquest were better versions of the same story. Well, that romance was doomed from square one...good thing it all seems laughable now. Dang, I just realized that I went to see Obsession with another, pleasanter date during that era as well. Hmm, could it be that my memory associations with these movies have colored my responses to them? Gosh!