Saturday, May 29, 2010

To Piggyback Off My Colleague's Thoughts

We lost a titan today.

Dennis Hopper was one of our last cinematic renaissance men. These days, there's so much marketing and PR people pushing their energies into actors as a brand, with even our greatest on-screen performers pigeon-holed into a certain type of filmmaking, but Hopper, writer, director, actor, artists, counterculturalist, represented the apex of what we could achieve. Those focusing on the years of Hopper we lost when he was in the wilds post-"The Last Movie" ignored the fact that, like Orson Welles, his accomplishments spoke for themselves. He didn't need a body of work with a masterpiece every four years. With both "Easy Rider" and, to an (unfortunately) lesser extent "The Last Movie," Hopper had his message, and he sent it loud and clear over the loudspeakers of Hollywood. The fact that they rejected the thoughtfulness of the latter movie, and every day neglect the lessons of the former more and more, speaks not to his lack of artistry but of the stubborn contrarian approach that usually greets titans.

A PBR in your honor, Mr. Hopper. You were gargantuan.

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