Now that I have my first five favorite 1970’s movies posted, I want to change gears and talk about the STARS of the 70’s!
Between the years of 1967 to 1981 there were a lot of great independent movies released. Most of them had unknown stars and unknown directors. Today those unknowns are legends…Speilberg, Lucas, Harrison Ford, Hoffman, Nicholson, and Streep. The list goes on and on. But it also was the decade of the MAN. There were a lot of men movies made in the 70’s. Which for those of us that like men, that was a good thing.
One of the best of those men was my choice for #10, in my list of top ten actors of the 1970’s…
De Niro’s performance is amazing and utterly compelling and fascinating to watch. No holds are barred in this performance. DeNiro comes alive as the unlikely crusader redemptively preparing to clean up the town by his own words… “wash all this scum off the streets“. This coming after a failed date with beautiful blonde political worker (played by Cybil Shepard) and his stalking of political candidate Charles Palantine(Leonard Harris). His target-practice ‘You talkin’ to me?‘ monologue before his mirror remains one of the best known and memorable scenes in film history. DeNiro should have won the Best Actor Oscar that year but lost out to Peter Finch who was awarded the prize posthumously. He did come back in 1980 and win the Oscar for another well played role in Raging Bull.