Dennis Hopper 1936-2010

Actor, film-maker, photographer and artist, Dennis Hopper has died at the age of 74.  There’s a good obituary at the BBC site, and the Guardian has, or had, a selection of clips from a long career in films which began with a minor role alongside James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause [1955].  Image credit: Dennis Hopper photographed in June 2008 by Antje Verena.

The Guardian’s Film section also has an uncredited Peter Bradshaw’s assessment of the film roles of “Hollywood’s Uneasy Rider” that’s worth a look.

And a comment piece in The Times

But for all the self-destruction, unfortunate marriages (five of them, including one to Michelle Phillips that lasted just eight days) and career- immolating craziness, Hopper maintained more integrity in his little finger than many of the bland, bloodless stars of today can muster in their entire surgically enhanced bodies.

Even his failures — and his chaotic second directorial outing, The Last Movie, must count as one despite its subsequent cult status — were achieved on his own terms. And his career highs, in Blue Velvet, River’s Edge, Easy Rider, True Romance and in the acclaimed first series of 24 — are the stuff of legend. It’s Hollywood that’s dead. Dennis Hopper will live on.

Here’s the scene mentioned in that Guardian piece, from the under-rated Flashback – probably not safe for work…

And for the traditionalists, a musical tribute.

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  • Mr Crumlin

    My favourite Dennis Hopper scene – a classic piece on movie making and acting. Not for those of a PC view on life!!

  • lamhdearg

    Crazy outthere bastard, sulute.

  • RepublicanStones

    Beat me to it Mr Crumlin, he knows he’s a goner, might as well take the pricks down a notch.

    RIP Dennis.

  • Mr Crumlin
    You hit the nail on the head, it was the first scene that sprang to mind when i heard that he had died. Obviously Walken and Hopper knew that they were working with a great (Tarantino) script and True Romance is an under rated film for sure.
    A sad loss indeed of a man unafraid to take risks and to be who he thought he should be.

    Any word of the law suit from his wife as he wrote her out of his will in the last few months?

  • Alias

    He was a good little method actor whose own drug-addled paranoia seemed to tie the 60s and the 70s nicely together. A character actor who basically played himself or, more accurately, played whatever aspect of himself that living on his edgy nerves summoned up.

  • HeinzGuderian

    The Pilgrim;Chapter 33…….(Hang in Hopper)

  • Rory Carr

    My favourite movie of Hopper’s is Stephen Gylenhaal’s 1991 adaption of Pete Dexter’s terrific novel, Paris Trout in which Hopper plays the title role. His most mature and emotionally and intellectually satisfying role ever I do believe.

    Here’s the trailer:

  • Frankie12

    Fitting tributes to my favourite drugged up madman… Dennis dude… You are absolved of that one terrible sin-being in land of the dead… R.I.P senor…

  • Frankie12

    And Bruce Forsythe still lives… Is there no justice??

  • Middlemarch

    Hopper rocks!