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|Posté le: Mer 28 Juin - 08:51 (2017) Sujet du message: Steve McQueen Amp Charles Bronson The Lives And Careers O
*Includes the actors' quotes about their lives and careers
*Includes a bibliography for further reading
*Includes a table of contents
In the 1960s and 1970s, no actor personified cool, calm and collected like Steve McQueen, whose suave anti-hero protagonists made men jealous and women swoon. As actor Donald Logue puts it in The Tao of Steve, “Steve is the prototypical cool American male. He's the guy on his horse, the guy alone. He has his own code of honor, his own code of ethics, his own rules of living. He never, ever tries to impress the women, but he always gets the girl." And indeed, that was the case not only in movies like The Thomas Crown Affair, Bullitt, The Getaway, and Papillon, but also in real life. Actress Ali MacGraw, who later became one of his wives, described his effect on women: "I remember seeing him across the swimming pool and my knees were knocking. He radiated such macho energy. Men wanted to be like him. Uptight society ladies and biker molls wanted to be with him."
Unlike many actors who become this type of heartthrob, McQueen seemed to have the bona fides. Growing up rough and tough in the Midwest, McQueen was sent to a juvenile facility California because he didn’t get along with his stepfather, and after that there he became a Marine. Like Jim Dean before him, McQueen also loved to race, and before he became an actor, he was actually making a living winning races in New York. As he once put it, "Racing is life. Anything before or after is just waiting."
However, McQueen was destined to become “The King of Cool” on screen, and after a few quick stints in acting jobs in the early 1950s, he began to look at it as an actual occupation. He once noted, "I really don't like to act. At the beginning, back in '51, I had to force myself to stick with it. I was real uncomfortable, real uncomfortable." Eventually, McQueen was comfortable enough to simply act natural and thus exude the tough confidence that made him an idol. That kind of performance translated well on the old TV Westerns, and a few of those, Tales of Wells Fargo and Trackdown, catapulted McQueen to the conscience of Hollywood. From there, it would only take a few years and a few movie appearances for McQueen to become a huge box office draw.
By the time Charles Bronson emerged from a series of miniscule, uncredited roles in the mid-1950s, the singing cowboy was two generations gone, save vestiges in television serials, such as Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. The dancing romantic lead of the Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire variety would soon exhaust itself as a genre in an age increasingly bent on realism and a more severe form of escape. Bronson possessed of the gifts common to the heroes of the previous era. Light-heartedness did not become him, and by all accounts, he was neither a singer nor dancer. He could not offer the heft of Gary Cooper or John Wayne, although he shared a reserved quality with the former. He did not possess the pristine good looks of Gregory Peck. In fact, one good-natured description making the rounds in Bronson’s heyday likened him to “A Clark Gable who has been left out in the sun too long.”
To accompany the rough-hewn appearance of Bronson’s new class of hero, the typical script gave his remarkably enduring persona, little to say in terms of dialogue that would reveal his inner thoughts. With minimal text, even those he attempts to help are unsure of his intentions, and few clues are offered by which the viewer can come to know his mind. As the grotesqueness of his characters’ violent acts increased, so did the heinous deeds of the criminals he fought, upping the ante to an eager public in search of a simple cure for its social ills. In a career of almost eighty films and a total body of work totaling 160 appearances including television, Bronson pushed the envelope of what graphic action the studios were willing to offer, and what the censors would accept.
bound: 83 pages
publisher: Charles River Editors (November 7, 2016)
filesize: 1569 KB