Saturday, September 17, 2011

A Fistful of Heavies! (Brad's Picks)

Saw Drive Friday night.  An absolutely stunning movie for a lot of reasons, but one of them was Ron Perlman's Jewish Pizzareia owner Nino, The Heavy to Albert Brooks' psychotic big bad Boss.  Perlman manages to be hilariously pathetic and terrifyingly mean.  The best traits when it comes to Noir (or Neo-Noir) Heavies.  To celebrate this cinematic achievement ITMOD is smacking you with its Fistful of Heavies.

5.  Flattop (Dick Tracy):  William Forsythe's deformed Tommy Gun artist was the first Heavy I really ever encountered...or at least, the first Heavy that grabbed my attention, stealing the show whenever he was on screen.  He was gross, snively, vile, and mean as hell.

4.  Donald Grant (From Russia With Love):  Soviet Super Spy Donald Grant to me is the closest guy to ever kill James Bond, heck he even killed a Bond double in the opening minutes of From Russia With Love.  After the second entry in the series, Bond becomes the Superman we know and love today.  But here, Shaw is tall enough, scary enough, brutal enough that you actually believe that Grant is capable of bringing Bond to his doom via a watch garrote.  Best Train Fight in Cinema.  Sorry Under Siege 2.

3.  Man With Knife (Chinatown):  "You're a very nosy fellow, kitty cat. Huh? You know what happens to nosy fellows? Huh? No? Wanna guess? Huh? No? Okay. They lose their noses."  Roman Polanski might not be the best director/actor but his rat faced goon is creepy scary in his one scene.  And he leaves quite an impression.

2.  Eddie Dane (Miller's Crossing):  JE Freeman's The Dane is a monster.  A brute with an axe to grind, preferably in the face of Gabriel Byrne's Tom Reagan.  He's quiet.  He grumbles and probably grinds his teeth through the film's entire run time.  He's not sure how he's gonna get Tom, but he's gonna get him.  The man is boiling.  He's going to explode.  Pray yer not around when he points the finger on you.

1.  Vince Stone (The Big Heat):  He deserves the top spot for that pot of coffee alone, but the real reason he reigns above all Heavies is that he's The Heavy who becomes The Boss, or at least the central threat.  Guess some clenched fists is all you need sometimes.  Too bad for the Two-Faced monster he created.


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