Thursday, September 8, 2011
365 Movies Day #164 "Chopper"
Before Eric Bana was known in America he had already given perhaps the best performance of his career in this 2000 semi-biographical film of infamous and highly entertaining Aussie criminal Mark Brandon "Chopper" Read. Bana is another "Black Hawk Down" veteran who may have been unfairly kicked in the teeth for the "Hulk" film and a less than stellar opening of "Troy". I've never found him a particularly compelling actor (though not bad). Then I saw "Chopper". Holy crap!
And you need someone impressive to play Chopper Read. Basically, Read is a small time thug who, with creativity and ingenuity, became one of the most entertaining and well-loved criminals in world history. Always a sucker for the media, his books (upon which the films are based) tell a semi-autobiographical account(self-admitted stretches to the truth) of his life. I haven't read the books, but they catapulted him to stardom.
Director Andrew Dominik followed this film up with the exceptional "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" and just wrapped "Cogan's Trade" (also with Pitt) in Lousiana...they didn't call me to audition.
It's somewhat gritty and somewhat funny and all entertaining. Made even more so, by the fact that Read EXISTS! Want to see more of the real Chopper Read? Here he is with some life advice:
What about Chopper Read ringtones:
Or administering a driver's test?
CHOPPER ON IMDB