With my annual Charlton Heston film celebration, HestFest going on, we at In the Mouth of Dorkness figured it would be a swell time to mention a few of our favorite bits of Hestness. For a man who spent half his career without his trousers on, he got some seriously awesome work under his belt.
5. The Good Actor (Wayne’s World): One of my favorite movie cameos happens when Wayne runs across a hammy, stilted actor and demands someone better.
4. The Petulant Brutality of Christopher Leiningen (The Naked Jungle): Leiningen is a man who knows what he wants, and knows how he likes it. When someone sells him a product with some hidden wear and tear (a wife), he’s less than pleased. Heston is so brutal, yet child-like in his anger.
3. Taylor’s Speech (Planet of the Apes): When Landon finally breaks and demands to know what Taylor’s deal is, he tells him. The result is one of the great statements on the individual and the human need to strive, while also an indictment of human folly, and a set-up for his ironic discoveries.
2. Ramon Miguel Vargas’ Righteous Fury (Touch of Evil): Mike Vargas puts up with a lot of crap, as a Mexican lawman in a border town ruled by a fat, sweaty beast of an Orson Welles. But when his wife is kidnapped, drugged, and possibly assaulted, Vargas’ cool finally breaks. The shot of Heston lifting a hoodlum by his neck (at 4:29) is actually quite scary in context.
1. Harry Steel’s Enlightened Attitude (Secret of the Incas): “Most men don’t enjoy taking money from women.” -Miss Morris “It’s the best kind. It’s the hardest to get. It always smells so good.” -Harry Steel