Over the years Philip Seymour Hoffman gave us dozens of brilliant and unforgettable performances. When looking at his page on imdb you see all those wonderful films, years of incredible choices and beautiful performances. I was going to make a post highlighting 10 best performances of his, but it's truly impossible to choose just 10.
|The Big Lebowski|
I have not seen all of his performances, but I've seen plenty. And this man never delivered a bad one. More importantly he always brought his A game and made his characters so insanely memorable. No matter how supporting his characters were, Hoffman played them as if they were real people. He infused them with so many emotions and his own charisma. It was simply impossible not to remember his work vividly after the movie was over. And I suspect, years after seeing the film.
Some of those performances, in the films listed above, were downright show stealing like in Boogie Nights and Talented Mr. Ripley. Who can forget his hilarious scene in Red Dragon where he is forced to see the 'art' of Fiennes's character? Or his desperate laughter and 'this is our concern, Dude" from The Big Lebowski?
|Synecdoche, New York|
One of the most impressive things an actor can do is to give a great performance in a movie that either doesn't work or shouldn't work in the first place and yet miraculously, it does. And Hoffman proved how good he was when he did just that in Mission Impossible 3 and Along Came Polly. Hoffman had pretty great comedy talent too - he also appeared in The Boat that Rocked, Richard Curtis' hilarious film.
Then there are the performances that are so mesmerizing, if I ever listed 100 of my favorite ones they would either end up on my list or be in serious consideration. There is recent The Master, in which Hoffman played the leader of the cult and for me, was miles above Phoenix. Phoenix was great, but this was one of the times Hoffman delivered work so raw and memorable you couldn't take your eyes of him.
First one was Doubt where Hoffman played a priest accused of molesting one of the boys in the school. I've seen this film so many times and I still don't know whether the priest was guilty or not. Hoffman makes his character's humanity and kindness so incredibly believable you truly don't know whether this is the truth or just an extremely well planned and executed facade meant to cover his sins.
|Before the Devil Knows You're Dead|
Scotty J. heartbroken and in tears after being rejected. Lancaster Dodd lashing out against one of the people disagreeing with him. Freddie Miles calling out Tom on his peeping. Brandt showing the Dude around. Father Flynn's sermon about the pillow and the gossip. So many scenes, so many performances, so many memories.
Rest in peace, Mr. Hoffman.