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Sometimes a film features a cool guy in it and you just can't forget him. Whether the film was a masterpiece, or a B-Movie, or just some piece of crap, if the guy is cool, then he stands out. Here is a list of some of Criterion's best films to feature a cool guy in them.
My favorite film ever. A totally unique experience, both visually and conceptually, Charles Laughton's one and only feature stars one of the coolest guys ever to come on the silver screen - Robert Mitchum. Mitchum's role is as a two-faced, psychotic minister on the prowl for hidden, stolen cash is menacing, with his signature voice crooning in the darkness while on the hunt being one of the many aspects of the film that will haunt you throughout. A true masterpiece with one damn cool guy involved.
James Mason brings the kind of stoic, quiet intensity that is the mark of Nicholas Ray's masterful film. With comedy and the juice of the 50's style film all over it, Bigger Than Life is made awesome by Mason's chilling mania. It is such a great watch, and Mason is such a cool guy.
Cornel Wilde is a wild man, and a wildly cool guy in this awesome movie about the hunter and the hunted. Splicing shots of the brutally indifferent natural world, animals hunting animals, Man (Wilde) is running for his life from an angry african tribe. An amazingly tense and wonderfully acted film, it will blow you away, as will cool guy Cornel Wilde.
You and I both knew that you cannot have a cool guy movie list without including Kirk Douglas' all-time cool guy performance in Spartacus. An epic without the usual twists and turns, and some somewhat unexpected brutality amongst the expected brutality, Kubrick's Spartacus stands on an island in his body of work. A great movie and a great cool guy starring.
Orson Welles is the epitome of cool in Carol Reed's suspense film, The Third Man. I won't spoil who Welles is or what he does, but he is amazing to say the least. Tight, twisty and beautifully shot, The Third Man is one of the greatest films ever made with some iconic shots and some superb storytelling. If you're looking to catch up on your all-time classics list, there is hardly a better place to start than with this film and the cool guy in it.
I know, I know....Cronenberg is awesome and all of his movies have cool guys in them! But this one happens to feature an actor, Peter Weller, one of the coolest guys on the planet, playing another man, William S. Burroughs, who happens to be one of the coolest guys in the literary world, in a crazy, quasi-adaptation of Burroughs' famed novel, Naked Lunch. The film is so very strange, and so alien that you find yourself forgetting exactly where you are and what you're watching, until you remember and freak out. It is such a great collaboration between Cronenberg-Weller-Burroughs that it warrants being on this list and it warrants Weller being a cool guy. Of course, you should already know that Weller is a cool guy, because he was also...
ROBOCOP! Weller happens to have been the cool guy who was nearly killed and then rebuilt as RoboCop. A violent, self-aware, sci-fi masterpiece, RoboCop is perfectly contained within itself and its universe. A great movie, filled with violence, blood, death, great lines, more violence, explosions, awesome robots, and one cool ass guy.
Warren Oates...Warren Oates.....Warren Oates...................Warren. I could say his name all day, and it would hardly ruin Two-Lane Blacktop...because this is one quiet, awesome movie! Better and much more to the point than the great, but righteous Easy Rider, Two-Lane Blacktop features some awesome stuff, and the greatest performance of Warren Oates' career...and that is saying something!
You have to be cool to be the dog whisperer willing to tame a racist dog that wants to kill you! Yes, Paul Winfield co-stars in Samuel Fuller's insane film, White Dog, as the black animal trainer in charge of de-racisting an otherwise protective and loving white German Shepard. An anti-racist film at heart, it is also silly and ridiculous, and not without some signature Fuller stuff along the way. A cool guy, a cool dog, a cool movie for you.
What better film to round out the list than a film with a beast in it? For aren't all men beasts at heart? Jean Cocteau's french masterpiece is a stunning visual adventure and a creative, if not surreal take on the world of the film, the beast stands as the coolest beast to be in films (tied with King Kong and Godzilla) in film history. If you haven't seen this wonderful, beautiful movie, you must immediately. Don't miss out on that cool beast.