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Old School today. What was Henry Fonda's signature role? (1 Viewer)

Signature role

  • Preston - Jezebel

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Thomas Watson - The story of Alexander Graham Bell

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Abraham Lincoln - Young Mr. Lincoln

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Tom Joad - Grapes of Wrath

    Votes: 17 23.6%
  • Charles - The Lady Eve

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Gil - The Ox-Bow Incident

    Votes: 1 1.4%
  • Wyatt Earp - My Darling Clementine

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Doug Roberts - Mr. Roberts

    Votes: 5 6.9%
  • Manny - The Wrong Man

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Juror 8 - 12 angry men

    Votes: 24 33.3%
  • The President - Fail Safe

    Votes: 1 1.4%
  • Frank - Yours, Mine and Ours

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Detective Chad Smith - The Smith Family

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Norman - On Golden Pond

    Votes: 20 27.8%
  • Other

    Votes: 4 5.6%

  • Total voters
    72

Ilov80s

Footballguy
That's a tough one for sure. He was always great in Westerns but I suspect 12 Angry Men will win since it's the movie of his people are most likely to have seen. I went with Tom Joad though, I consider it his best performance and his best movie. 

Shout out to the Lady Eve though, it's fun to see him play a clumsy nerd in a screwball comedy. He was so versatile. 

 

Eephus

Footballguy
Went with Tom Joad because the role is emblematic of the decent everyman that Fonda often portrayed.  This could be used against type when he played more villainous or ambivalent characters.

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
Went with Tom Joad because the role is emblematic of the decent everyman that Fonda often portrayed.  This could be used against type when he played more villainous or ambivalent characters.
Yeah but he’s not really all that decent. There’s a lot of darkness there that we would see fully come out later.

 

jhib

Footballguy
I'm going to go with Blue, the guy that died right before the lube wrestling match.  

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
Since we have been discussing signature roles and old movie stars, I have to bring up Robert Mitchum’a thoughts on this idea 

to paraphrase

Osborne: What’s the best Robert Mitchum performance?

Mitchum: I don’t know

Osborne:Isn’t there a performance of yours that you saw and thought was special?

Mitchum: I wouldn’t know, they didn’t pay us to see them 

 
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berndog

Footballguy
Not sure it was his signature role but he was amazing in Norman in On Golden Pond. 

Watching my Grandfather have Alzheimer’s and then watching that movie was incredibly powerful and something I will never forget 

 

Encyclopedia Brown

Footballguy
Not sure it was his signature role but he was amazing in Norman in On Golden Pond. 

Watching my Grandfather have Alzheimer’s and then watching that movie was incredibly powerful and something I will never forget 
I saw an interview with Jane Fonda where she got teary-eyed in describing how autobiographical much of the emotional stuff was between her and Henry in the movie. She quoted the line where she says "It seems like we have been mad at each other for a long time," and he responds with "I just thought we didn't like each other."

At the end of that scene, Jane reaches out and touches Henry's arm (it wasn't in the script) and he starts to cry. 

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
I saw an interview with Jane Fonda where she got teary-eyed in describing how autobiographical much of the emotional stuff was between her and Henry in the movie. She quoted the line where she says "It seems like we have been mad at each other for a long time," and he responds with "I just thought we didn't like each other."

At the end of that scene, Jane reaches out and touches Henry's arm (it wasn't in the script) and he starts to cry. 
Apparently Henry hated all the “method” style Jane used and thought she wasn’t a real actress. He was pretty rough on her making that movie- often belittling her acting approach. She said Katharine Hepburn is what for her through the movie.

 

Encyclopedia Brown

Footballguy
She said Katharine Hepburn is what for her through the movie.
I read the exact same thing.

Hepburn had a long-time reputation as being cold, aloof, standoffish. Yet, she spent the duration of this movie trying to get Henry and Jane to reconcile. When they had downtime between scenes, she pushed them to simply talk to each other. At meals, she made sure sure they sat next to each other. 

She deliberately prolonged scenes with the three of them so Henry and Jane would have to work through their emotions. 

 

Eephus

Footballguy
TCM is showing The Wrong Man today at 1PM EST.  I haven't watched it for decades but I remember it as a dark little film about a man trapped by circumstances.  Fonda plays the title character.

Hitchcock made it during his late 1950s peak period which is as strong a half decade of work as any director has ever had.

 

wikkidpissah

Footballguy
TCM is showing The Wrong Man today at 1PM EST.  I haven't watched it for decades but I remember it as a dark little film about a man trapped by circumstances.  Fonda plays the title character.

Hitchcock made it during his late 1950s peak period which is as strong a half decade of work as any director has ever had.
Saw it again a few wks ago and meh. Those two 1956 flix, this and Man Who Knew Too Much, he was clearly mining something about terror & the family that just didn't register w me.

 

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