I have been watching a great deal of films over the last few weeks while Amy recovers. We have watched a number of Robin Williams film, who we both admire. I have got through the box set Mork and Mindy in that time. Robin Williams is one of my favourite actors, one because he had a lot of talent for acting and comedy and two because no matter how old you are there will be a film of his you can watch. I was first introduced to him quite young watching ‘re runs of Mork and Mindy on channel 4. I used to laugh out loud at this crazy alien from out of space. The director did a great job letting Williams run free with the character and basically performing stand up. He was the perfect creation for a kid as he was pretty much a kid himself.
From here I watched films like Mrs Doubtfire, Jumanji, Hook, Toys and Aladdin which were pretty much kids films. They were fun and let your imagination run free. Neverland is definitely a magical place for kids and reading the book made the story that more magical. Williams always looked like he was having fun. I think he chose these films because he had a love of children. Even in interviews you felt he was someone you could talk to as a child.
I still enjoyed his more dramatic roles in my childhood, films like Awakening, Dead Poet Society, Good Morning Vietnam, Good Will Hunting because they were great performances. Good Morning Vietnam was full of energy and you could see the comedy, where as Awakenings was lower key although very passionate as was Good Will Hunting. I don’t think Williams was scared to try something new, One hour Photo being an example. He looked particularly creepy and sounded likewise. I felt this was an underrated performance from him. I have not seen insomnia. But I believe this was another creepy role.
Robin Williams lived to perform and when it became apparent that he could no longer do this he said “that’ s enough” As sad as it was that he died I think it would have been sadder for him to have got to the point where he couldn’t do what he wanted.
Another actor who left this world too soon was John Candy. He was a big guy who had a big heart on and off screen. He also had a sadness about him mainly due to his weight. He is another actor who made me laugh as a kid. I was only 12 when he died so I only have childhood memories. In Uncle Buck he was an uncle you’d love to have. He was fun, silly and although he had flaws his heart was in the right place. The interrogation scene is particularly funny and I imagine the kids loved him on that film.
Trains, planes and automobiles I think was his best performance. Him and Martin made a great pairing as two opposites rubbing each other up the wrong way. The scene where Candys character pours out his heart about liking who he was, was particularly powerful and showed that Candy could be a serious actor.
Small parts in Splash and home alone showed him again as a big lovable guy with a big heart. Again there were flaws, but hasn’t everybody got those? The same can be said for his character in Cool Runnings when he played the out of shape Olympics champione shamed because he cheated.
Candy seem to love the company of others. Story’s of having Dinner after midnight because everyone was enjoying themselves so much. He was clearly a laid back guy. Another story on the set of Trains where he came onto set with lots of gym equipment and never used it. This was his biggest problem, his weight! He hated being over weight and hated the names he was called and the fact that people would concentrate on how big he was rather than what a great person and actor he was.
He obviously struggled with his weight and this caused him great sadness. He was always at risk due to his father dying young. We have to celebrate what he achieved rather than what could have been. I love his films and the characters he played. Williams too suffered through addiction, but fortunately he cane through it, but he lived to perform and when that was at risk it was time to go.
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