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Actors/Actresses You Dislike or Like

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Keith Cobby, Nov 18, 2019.

  1. SamT

    SamT Producer

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    Of current people I like Jessica Chastain a lot. I watch any movie with her in it. She was not known and I remember seeing her for the first time in The Tree of Life (2011). I instantly recognized her as someone to follow her work.
     
  2. Keith Cobby

    Keith Cobby Cinematographer

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    Couldn't agree more. I was also introduced to her by The Tree of Life, and posted about her on that thread. The other contemporary actress i like is Julie Delpy who is quite wonderful in the Before Trilogy.
     
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  3. RICK BOND

    RICK BOND Second Unit

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    I love the actors and actresses from the 1930's to 1960's the most. Last of the Great classic movie actors left is Kirk Douglas. 103 years old on December 9 ! Actress Olivia De havilland is also 103 years old.
     
  4. Bert Greene

    Bert Greene Supporting Actor

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    Just generally speaking, I probably find 80-85% of old-time actors pretty agreeable, percentage-wise. The number that either don't click for me at all, or even (especially) generate full-fledged dislike is actually pretty small. There are a lot of names I basically like, such as James Cagney, Cary Grant, Myrna Loy, Gary Cooper, Olivia de Havilland, etc., but I can't say they quite qualify as "favorites." Just part of a large, general fondness. "Favorites" is perhaps reserved for the top 10%, in whose films I'll be more apt to make a beeline for, regardless of genre or perceived merit.

    There are a lot of quirky caveats when making such lists, though. I like Cyd Charisse, for example, but I don't really care much for the type of movies she was in. Same thing with Ann Harding. I like her a whole lot, but never cared for the type of soapy 'women's pictures' she specialized in. Ditto Helen Hayes. Love her as a young actress, but those 'Back Street' type films MGM put her in back in the early-30s are not my cup of tea. I like John Wayne quite a bit in his earlier days of the 30s/40s, but not as much later on, when he became increasingly a caricature of himself. In the same vein, I like Ginger Rogers in the 1930s very much, but find her a bit too self-conscious in her later-year performances. It's the case with a number of stars. I'm not really too keen on Errol Flynn as a whole, but he when he got roles like in "Robin Hood" or "Rocky Mountain," he really hit the bullseye, and gets kudos from me.

    Along similar lines, I've never really 'liked' Miriam Hopkins all that much, yet she is quite a compelling actress, and whenever I see her in a film, I have a hard time taking my eyes off of her. For the most part, I've noticed my tastes in actors/actresses hasn't changed much over the years, but there have been a few exceptions. I think Kirk Douglas grates on my nerves far more than he used to. I have a hard time watching him. Same with Robert Cummings, oddly enough. When I was a teenager watching late-shows, I used to like John Garfield, but over time I grew extremely weary of his chip-on-the-shoulder schtick. Long time ago I used to wonder what on earth was the appeal of Kay Francis. She seemed rather dull to me. But as the years have gone by, and I saw more and more of her films, I developed quite a liking for her. Anyway, I've put together a list of big favorites of mine, along with some non-favorites, and I'll submit them in a follow-up post shortly. I'll probably forget a dozen names on both lists, though.
     
  5. Keith Cobby

    Keith Cobby Cinematographer

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    Actors whose films i like:
    Clark Gable
    Bogie
    Burt Lancaster
    James Garner
    Danny Kaye
    Cary Grant
    George Raft

    Actresses:
    Virginia Mayo
    Susan Hayward
    Lee Remick
    Rhonda Fleming
    Jane Greer
    Marguerite Chapman
    Dorothy Patrick
    Vera Ellen
    Eva Marie Saint
    Mary Ure
     
  6. Bert Greene

    Bert Greene Supporting Actor

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    Okay, I've tossed together a couple of lists like I'd planned. Probably forgot any number of key entries, but at least I tried to give it a whirl.

    (FAVORITES):

    Alan Ladd, Randolph Scott, Dorothy Lamour, Joel McCrea, William Powell, Joan Leslie, Rod Cameron, Alice Faye, James Stewart, Roy Rogers, Frances Dee, Mae Clarke, Victor Jory, Ronald Colman, Claire Trevor, Lillian Gish, Jack Holt, Herbert Marshall, Fred MacMurray, Una Merkel, George O'Brien, Glenda Farrell, Evelyn Venable, Bruce Bennett, Elissa Landi, Lloyd Nolan, Buck Jones, Raymond Massey, Anne Jeffries, Nan Grey, Chester Morris, Mala Powers, Bessie Love, Julie Adams, Jon Hall, Marie Windsor, Bill Elliott, Frances Rafferty, Helen Twelvetrees, Dale Robertson, Laura La Plante, Gene Tierney, Esther Ralston, Louis Hayward, Jean Rogers, Marjorie Weaver, Charles Middleton, Gail Russell, Clint Walker, Fay Wray, Marjorie White, Roy Barcroft, Sally Blane, Constance Moore, Richard Arlen.

    (DON'T LIKE MUCH, or DON'T 'CLICK' FOR ME):

    Katharine Hepburn, Wallace Beery, Mickey Rooney, Tony Curtis, Jean Harlow, Kirk Douglas, Joan Crawford, Betty Hutton, Marlon Brando, Jack Lemmon, Judy Garland, Paul Newman, Robert Cummings, Lee Tracy, Bette Davis, Mae West, John Barrymore, Sterling Hayden, Tallulah Bankhead, John Garfield, Lana Turner, Peter Lawford, Steve Cochran, Spencer Tracy.
     
  7. SultanOfWhat

    SultanOfWhat Stunt Coordinator

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    I love Katharine Hepburn, with my favorite performances of hers being in Alice Adams, Holiday, The Philadelphia Story, Bringing Up Baby, Woman of the Year, and The African Queen. Hepburn along with Ginger Rogers has probably given me the most enjoyment of any actress.

    Among those I dislike, Farley Granger is close to the top, as I feel his poor performances in Rope and Strangers on a Train compromised those films so much I can't watch them again. His presence in They Live by Night stopped me from seeing that film.

    Some others here have mentioned disliking Mickey Rooney, and I must generally concur. My abiding memories of him are of an over-enthusiastic (almost manic) youth, and that awful role as the Japanese superintendent in Breakfast at Tiffany's. Of course, the director and producer are probably more to blame for the latter debacle, but it's Mickey we see in the cringe-worthy scenes.
     
  8. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Lead Actor

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    Favorites, in no particular order. Just off the top of my head, I'm sure that I'm leaving out folks who should be in a personal favorites list.

    Actors
    Paul Newman - Probably my all time favorite actor. Just always effortless. Always commands the screen.
    James Stewart
    Henry Fonda
    Samuel L Jackson
    Robert Mitchum
    Denzel Washington
    Robert DeNiro
    Tom Hanks
    Kirk Douglas
    Montgomery Clift
    Reviewing this list, I have to correct one oversight and add - Humphrey Bogart

    Actresses
    Meryl Streep
    Elizabeth Taylor
    Eva Marie Saint
    Emma Thompson
    Kate Winslet
    Audrey Hepburn
    Julianne Moore
    Frances McDormand
    Shirley MacClaine
    Sigourney Weaver

    (Lots more to choose, but those will do.)

    - Walter.
     
  9. Jeffrey D

    Jeffrey D Supporting Actor

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    If we’re talking favorites now, I think Edward Norton is on my list. Paul Newman is definitely another- Nobody’s Fool is an outstanding film with a great performance by him.
     
  10. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    When I was a kid growing up in the early 1960's, I wasn't a big fan of Bette Davis. It was probably due to watching her in a couple of movies she made back then that didn't cast her in a good light which frankly made her kind of creepy to me especially with those "Bette Davis" eyes.:) I was more of a Katharine Hepburn fan back then especially with Hepburn being from Connecticut like myself. I didn't dislike Davis, but, as I said she was kind of creepy playing Baby Jane and Charlotte during those years when I watched those two movies as a young boy. However, once I became a young adult and started watching more of her earlier films then I quickly recognized her great acting ability. She's still not among my ten favorite actresses, but, she's in the next bunch of ten.

    One more thing about Bette. I have to agree with Errol Flynn about one attribute that I never really noticed back then. She had a great walk. Anybody else ever noticed that? Flynn thought she had one sexy walk as she pranced about.
     
  11. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    The three actresses I have in bold are among my favorite modern actresses. Moore is among the most fearless actresses I have ever seen on screen. Streep I didn't care for when she was in her prime. I didn't dislike her, but, I didn't care for some of her roles, particularly, those in which she used an accent. However, over the last 10-15 years I've grown to appreciate her more even those earlier accented films.:) Those other actresses I have no issues with and think all of them are fine actresses. As I stated beforehand, I really can't think of an actor or actress I really disliked. Some of them I care less about than others, but, I don't have any actor/actress in my adult years that I can say I actually disliked.

    As far as the actors you listed, I enjoy each and every one of them. Some are among my next ten favorite actors.
     
  12. Reggie W

    Reggie W Producer

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    So, the way it breaks down for me is I don't really dislike any actor as any time I have thought I disliked someone's acting I see them in a role and think "Wow, he/she was really good in that!"

    A couple cases in point, Brad Pitt and Keanu Reeves. Most of the time when I would see them in a film I would think they were lousy or just bland. However, there are always exceptions to this. Pitt was great this year in both Ad Astra and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and I think Reeves found a perfect role for him in John Wick.

    Funny thing was since Pitt had impressed me in those two films I decided to watch World War Z for the first time during October thinking maybe he was good in that. Sadly, I found him completely bland, not bad or unlikable, it just seemed he brought nothing to it and the anybody could have played the part as well or better than he did.

    So, really nobody I can honestly say I dislike.

    I think sometimes a good actor/performance can make a movie I don't care for worth watching and there are some actors that just are really good and bring it no matter what they are in.

    Then there are times where I watch something and see an actor I know is good and they are just terrible. Case in point would be somebody like Oscar Isaac whom I have seen in many things and he is always wonderful but then I see him in the Star Wars stuff and he was just dreadful...but again I would chalk that up to poorly written and conceived part, not the actor.

    Then there is Katie Holmes. To me a total enigma...I thought she was fantastic in Wonder Boys but dreadful in other stuff I have seen her in. Again, it seems to me in the right part with the right set of circumstances an actor can be really good but in lesser circumstances...well...they can seem completely lost.

    In terms of the classic movie stars...for me it mostly works the same way. In a good part they are great, in a part that is poorly written and/or conceived...not good. I like Gregory Peck in most films but in Gentleman's Agreement...wow, stinker of epic proportions.
     
  13. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    How dare you disparage a movie that won the Best Picture Oscar.;)
     
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  14. cinemiracle

    cinemiracle Screenwriter

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    There have been many films that won a Best Film oscar and which I thought were not deserved of the honor. I have no interest in the Oscars anyway
     
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  15. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Dude, we all know that and I was kidding which is why there is a "wink" smilie with that non-serious comment.
     
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  16. Walter Kittel

    Walter Kittel Lead Actor

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    I don't recall where I heard this (an interview, maybe a commentary track) but Paul Thomas Anderson was talking about the actors who portrayed actors in Boogie Nights and their capacity to do purposeful 'bad acting' to sell their characters. He felt like this particular type of acting 'separated the men from the boys' as he put it. The point being that Julianne Moore excelled at this and in PTA's opinion it was no contest between Moore and the rest of the cast. One of those odd types of compliments that always stayed with me.

    - Walter.
     
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  17. Robin9

    Robin9 Producer

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    Several posters have noted that in their lists of favorites they're probably overlooking some. That's certainly true of my list! How could I omit William Powell, Fred MacMurray and Clifton Webb? I could I forget about Tina Louise?
     
  18. Reggie W

    Reggie W Producer

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    Another aspect of this who do you like or dislike as an actor is what kind of acting do you like? There is movie star acting, which I would define by saying you have hired the "star" to basically deliver their personality. Examples would be guys like John Wayne or Cary Grant. These guys are pretty much playing John Wayne and Cary Grant in every role. They don't submerge themselves in the parts, they play what has made them "stars" most of the time. So, as much as they are playing the character, they are also playing the things or quirks that make them stand out on screen. Also guys like Wayne and Grant simply ooze charisma and the camera loves them...hence they are stars. In this sort of acting they basically are always playing two things, the character and the persona that has made them so likable to begin with. So, what makes them so much fun to watch for an audience is we want to see how Wayne or Grant gets out of this one...we mix what we know about them and how we feel about them with the situation their character has been dropped into.

    I would quote Kubrick here on acting "Interesting is better than real."

    Then there is character acting, which can be defined in a couple ways because sometimes character actors are hired to bring the specific odd thing they have often brought before or it can be an actor that does submerge themselves and tries to bring something unexpected to a part or scene. An actor I love that probably does not get mentioned when talking about good or favorite actors is Akim Tamiroff who always brought something interesting to whatever part he was playing. I love when Akim pops up in a picture. I think back in his day people did recognize he was great because he was nominated a couple of times for best supporting actor. He was always fun working with Welles or even in something like Topkapi.
     
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  19. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    William Powell is not in my top ten, but, he's certainly in my top 20.
     

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