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 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 3:11 AM   
 By:   Nicolai P. Zwar   (Member)

The comments about Mr. Heston as a bad actor are unnecessary. Why do some on this board always have to interject something negative into a positive discussion. I can't imagine anyone as Ben-Hur, Moses, or El Cid (and many more)other than Mr. Heston. So, enough with the negativity. Give the man his due.


Charlton Heston had one of the most dauntless screen presences of any actor I have ever seen.

To state he was a "bad actor" is completely missing the mark. Gimme that chiseled-in-stone chin and that gravel voice over most of what passes these days for a "leading man" any day. Here's to you, Chuck.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 3:55 AM   
 By:   fleming   (Member)

Don't leave out "Will Penny" (David Raksin) and "Touch of Evil" (Henry Mancini).

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 5:00 AM   
 By:   pp312   (Member)

Heston a "bad actor" simply outrageous

Yes, to the point where I thought the poster was joking, which is the only reason I haven't objected until now. Heston in the right role, and we all know what the right roles were, was unmatched for sheer charisma and screen presence. In the wrong role he was stiff and awkward, but then so was Laurence Olivier. Even the most admired actors can be bad in the wrong role. If you doubt it check out Jason Robards in "Julius Caesar" (1970).

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 5:54 AM   
 By:   MikeP   (Member)

The comments about Mr. Heston as a bad actor are unnecessary. Why do some on this board always have to interject something negative into a positive discussion. I can't imagine anyone as Ben-Hur, Moses, or El Cid (and many more)other than Mr. Heston. So, enough with the negativity. Give the man his due.


Charlton Heston had one of the most dauntless screen presences of any actor I have ever seen.

To state he was a "bad actor" is completely missing the mark. Gimme that chiseled-in-stone chin and that gravel voice over most of what passes these days for a "leading man" any day. Here's to you, Chuck.



Absolutely. Heston had presence. He had impact. He was a force to be reckoned with onscreen.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 5:59 AM   
 By:   jkannry   (Member)

The comments about Mr. Heston as a bad actor are unnecessary. Why do some on this board always have to interject something negative into a positive discussion. I can't imagine anyone as Ben-Hur, Moses, or El Cid (and many more)other than Mr. Heston. So, enough with the negativity. Give the man his due.


Charlton Heston had one of the most dauntless screen presences of any actor I have ever seen.

To state he was a "bad actor" is completely missing the mark. Gimme that chiseled-in-stone chin and that gravel voice over most of what passes these days for a "leading man" any day. Here's to you, Chuck.



Absolutely. Heston had presence. He had impact. He was a force to be reckoned with onscreen.


He was an amazing actor who took risks.Planet of the Apes was a career risk. Good scores and good roles. Planet of the Apes,Omega Man,Soyulent Green. That's what I grew up on.

Was funny that Sliders had him unseen on screen as governor of California post alien invasion.

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 6:44 AM   
 By:   robertmro   (Member)

Kirk Douglas: Also has a chiseled face and powerful presence but had versatility and acting talent.

Charlton Heston: Played basically one part. He could have been replaced by a cardboard cutout. He had a face and voice but nothing more.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 7:13 AM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Don't forget '55 Days at Peking'.

Also

CHARLTON HESTON = BAD ACTOR


He was hilarious in "Bowling for Columbine!"

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 7:35 AM   
 By:   ToneRow   (Member)

Played basically one part. He could have been replaced by a cardboard cutout. He had a face and voice but nothing more.

This describes John Wayne, to me. smile

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 7:50 AM   
 By:   WILLIAMDMCCRUM   (Member)

Nobody's mentioned Newman's exquisite score for 'The President's Lady' yet. Or Newman's 'Greatest Story Ever Told'.


It's all related to the typecasting, the type of movie and the necessary musical accompaniments. In the old days, it was also related to the studio system. So Flynn, Bogart etc. had the Warners stable's reliable support for example.

Many stars had this kind of rapport with the musical muse thanks to identification with a genre, and contracts with a studio. Stu Granger and MGM, Bob Taylor and MGM etc., Davis and Warners.


As regards his acting style, it was a stage affair, that's how he started out, in the Cornell company touring Shakespeare, and then in live TV broadcasts, no doubt a hairy experience, and never done today really. Somewhere there's a great YouTube vid of a production of 'Jane Eyre' where he played an aloof Rochester from the archives, all live. That sort of acting is tough to do, and requires a whole set of different skills than the 'sit around for 6 hours and record two takes of one-liner winging' that many actors build careers on.

He did have a sort of self-indulgent swagger in some roles, you could always see it coming, the hands suddenly placed on the hips, the slight shaking of the head from side to side as he looked down, then up, and of course the frowning of the jaw muscles and the menacing forehead. But good directors stripped that away, as in 'Ben-Hur', and 'The War Lord'.

No, it was his politics swing that gave him a predisposition to certain 'retrospective' negative comments on his acting. There are many styles of acting, and they're needed for many productions and art-design styles. People who favour only one type of acting, the 'naturalistic' is the current fetish, are really just not eclectic enough.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 7:58 AM   
 By:   paul rossen   (Member)

Don't forget '55 Days at Peking'.

Also

CHARLTON HESTON = BAD ACTOR


He was hilarious in "Bowling for Columbine!"



He was a fine actor and has been stated more than fine in the right role. Anyone who states otherwise hasn't seen the full scope of his career. As far as Bowling for Columbine is concerned...he was ill at the time he let Michael Moore into his home and was completely taken advantage of...I don't believe he was hilarious at all. It was sad. Enough said.

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 8:03 AM   
 By:   WILLIAMDMCCRUM   (Member)

The comments about Mr. Heston as a bad actor are unnecessary. Why do some on this board always have to interject something negative into a positive discussion. I can't imagine anyone as Ben-Hur, Moses, or El Cid (and many more)other than Mr. Heston. So, enough with the negativity. Give the man his due.


Well, I'd have to disagree over Moses. DeMille used him as a cardboard icon in that, and it doesn't do him justice. Burt Lancaster's Moses is much more believable, but he had a superior Anthony Burgess script to work from. And it IS better, no matter what box-office says.

As regards 'El Cid' it's worth remembering that the average Joe outside Spain hadn't heard of Rod of Bivar, and the film actually did a lot to popularise that story. But it's an idealisation. So it's not as though there are lots of contenders!

And 'Ben-Hur' in Wallace's novel is a teenage boy. So can we really say, Chuck was ideal?


As I say, he had a stage style that fits certain films ideally. What more can be asked?

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 8:06 AM   
 By:   paul rossen   (Member)



Well, I'd have to disagree over Moses. DeMille used him as a cardboard icon in that, and it doesn't do him justice. Burt Lancaster's Moses is much more believable, but he had a superior Anthony Burgess script to work from. And it IS better, no matter what box-office says.





There will be a 'new' Moses in the upcoming Ridley Scott's Exodus movie...Christian Bale.

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 8:12 AM   
 By:   WILLIAMDMCCRUM   (Member)

Kirk Douglas: Also has a chiseled face and powerful presence but had versatility and acting talent.

Charlton Heston: Played basically one part. He could have been replaced by a cardboard cutout. He had a face and voice but nothing more.



One thing underrated these days is athleticism. He was genuinely athletic, and that shouldn't be despised. Yes, he used stuntmen, but there are shots in 'The War Lord' for instance where he somersaults, and falls almost upside-down from a small tower. And you can see he's doing it. He also had a physique which was elegant and classical, not the result of muscle hypertrophy in the gym of the Schwarzenegger variety.

Actually, he was good when good directors took him in hand. Douglas was as much stereotyped and accused of hystrionics as any.

I do think that had his politics been different, he'd be revered today. Objectivity is not easy to come by among critics, and many critics don't even think it's part of the job description.

They're all only actors y'know. They won't make your life better!

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 8:41 AM   
 By:   First Breath   (Member)

My favorite is Armageddon (Trevor Rabin), where Heston is the narrator.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 9:11 AM   
 By:   The CinemaScope Cat   (Member)

Those who call Charlton Heston a bad actor obviously know nothing about acting. He found champions in Laurence Olivier, Vanessa Redgrave (who played Lady MacBeth to Heston's MacBeth on stage) and Orson Welles, all of whom know a bit about acting.

What other contemporary of Heston's could have played Moses, El Cid or Ben-Hur?

The very idea of Marlon Brando demanding the red sea part, Glenn Ford driving a chariot or Robert Mitchum at the battle of Valencia is enough to send me into a giggle fit! Nothing against these gentlemen and fine actors but when Heston roared for the Red Sea to part, you believed it! One of the very few actors able to be convincing outside of the 19th and 20th centuries.

His grizzled cowboy in Will Penny, his slyly humorous Richelieu in The Three Musketeers, the weary cavalry officer in Major Dundee attest to his versatility as an actor.

Why do I suspect his unpopular NRA stance have more to do with the negative comments toward his solid acting than his performances?

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 9:22 AM   
 By:   paul rossen   (Member)

Back to the original question-was Heston aware of the composers of his films. I would answer that with a resounding YES!

Just look at the forward written by Heston for the Rhino release of Ben-Hur in which Heston wrote he wasn't sure whether Ben-Hur was the best Rozsa score for a Heston film but the contributions of the score to the film were extraordinary. I'm sure he thought the same of El Cid.

Someone previously stated that Elmer Bernstein had contacted Heston to lobby on The Big Country. This was of course after The Ten Commandments.

From everything written and said about Heston in the press etc it appears he was interested in all facits of film making and was very proud of his accomplishments in the industry.

 
 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 9:27 AM   
 By:   PIERREP   (Member)

Never though people would spit on Mister Heston ! What if i talk about another actor like Clint Eastwood. Is he also a bad actor ? If so who is a good actor ? Anyway i was talking about music in his films. Maybe change the post to:

GREGORY PECK = TERRIFIC SCORES !

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 10:09 AM   
 By:   Nicolai P. Zwar   (Member)

The Big Country and Planet of the Apes and Ben Hur certainly belong to the all time best film scores, and all are favorites of mine. These three aren't simply good scores, they are great classic scores.

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 10:10 AM   
 By:   Nicolai P. Zwar   (Member)

Oh yes, and El Cid, of course!

 
 Posted:   Feb 8, 2014 - 10:11 AM   
 By:   Nicolai P. Zwar   (Member)



Well, I'd have to disagree over Moses. DeMille used him as a cardboard icon in that, and it doesn't do him justice. Burt Lancaster's Moses is much more believable, but he had a superior Anthony Burgess script to work from. And it IS better, no matter what box-office says.




The score by Ennio Morricone is very beautiful for the Burt Lancaster version of Moses.

 
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