February 26, 2017

R.I.P. Bill Paxton (1955-2017)

As to why seeing our beloved artists die has such an effect on us, some eloquent soul said: "We don't cry because we knew them, we cry because they helped us know ourselves."

Jesus Christ, every time we turn around it seems like another part of our childhood, as well as a staple in our artistic hall of fame, is dying far too early, and breaking our hearts.

This time, it's Bill Paxton, a guy who entertained us for over three decades with his brilliant and unique brand of acting. He was funny, and he could do intense as well, but it was always Bill Paxton's humanity, which shone brightly in any role he inhabited, that made him such a great talent.

If Bill Paxton is known for one thing by a vast majority of moviegoers, it's his delivery of the line "Game over!" in the Sci-Fi classic, Aliens. Of course fans of the man's work know that he brought way more than that once iconic scene tho the world of entertainment.

He was an excellent actor who filled our childhood (and adulthood) with so many entertaining roles in awesome movies, that it's hard for us to pick a favorite, so here are the Bill Paxton movies that get the most play in our Blu-ray/DVD players.

ALIENS (1986)
A perfect movie, and a truly iconic role for Mr. Paxton. Do supporting characters get any better than Hudson?

"Well why don't you put her in charge?" is a perfect example of just how great he was at line delivery.

NEAR DARK (1987)
Severin is one of the best vampire characters ever committed to film, and Bill Paxton owned the hell out of this movie.

Fun Fact: Near Dark was made a year after Aliens. Vasquez and Bishop were his co-vampires in this one.

Oh man, I can't begin to describe to you how much I love this movie, or how many times I've seen it. Bill Paxton had a smaller supporting role in this one, but per his usual, it was an important one. As great as Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer were in this one, that's saying a hell of a lot.

FRAILTY (2001)
Not only was this maybe Bill Paxton's greatest performance in a leading role (bold claim, I know), but it was his directorial debut, which makes the fact that this little-known serial killer thriller is such a gem.

A truly excellent movie.

TITANIC (1997)
Come on, just looking at that picture warms our cold, lifeless hearts.

Even lesser know than Frailty, this excellent Sam Raimi thriller featured Paxton vs. Billy Bob Thornton in a battle of greed and wits, and once again showed that the actor could easily carry a film.

APOLLO 13 (1995)
 "I could eat the ass out of a dead rhinoceros."

Holy shit if the guy didn't steal the movie every time he was on-screen. If you were alive in the 80's, then Chet is definitely a part of your lexicon.

Special shout outs to Streets of Fire, The Terminator, True Lies, Navy Seals, Trespass, Twister, and U-571, all of which were great flicks, and feature great work by Bill Paxton.

R.I.P., good man. And thank you for everything.

Now it's time for us to go marathon these flicks. You should too. 

1 comment :

  1. Felt like I got punched in the guy when my husband broke the news to me Sunday afternoon. Have loved this guy's acting (and directing) since the 80s. My husband heard him last week on the WTF podcast and said he couldn't have been nicer, no ego at all, great stories, great sense of humor. Not to mention, Marc Maron posted a selfie of them together and Paxton is like 8 years older than MM but looked younger. Very healthy... My husband was almost as upset as I was (I say "almost" because I am pretty sure my husband did not think he was really hot playing bad-boy roles like Severin in Near Dark). My heart goes out to his wife and kids. Godammit!