Daily Archives: February 7, 2012

The Joy of Richard

Standard

I was feeling a little blue earlier. And so I decided to look up the CATS rehearsal videos from 1994, shot at the New London Theatre in the West End. I love watching young Richard, all of 22, dancing up a storm. Surely, the quality of the images is not great, a bit of a blur; but I can still recognize him. The height, of course. The profile. Those big, beautiful hands. The thighs. You are a very distinctive-looking fellow, dear Richard.

And as I watched it, I could feel the interior smile beginning and spreading to the outside.

I felt what I can only describe as joy.

Thank you, Richard.
P.S. if you have any trouble picking him out, here’s a hint. Ponytail. 😉

Aside

Nikolia's prison tattoos front and back. Look familiar?

"Know thy self." Lucas's Gnothi Seauton tattoo seems to be a fan favorite.

Lucas preparing to clean up in the MI5 washroom as Harry Pierce enters in Ep1, S7.

Lucas North’s tattoos. Souvenirs of his eight years in a Russian hellhole. Symbols that told a story. I have never cared much for tattoos, but I found Lucas’s ink fascinating, part of the mystery of the character.

Watching the 2007 movie Eastern Promises this afternoon, I was reminded of Lucas’s tattoos. Viggo Mortensen’s character, Nikolia, plays a driver for members of the Russian mob based in London. it’s an excellent film, violent but with some complex characterizations–everyone is not what they initially appear to be–and it held my attention firmly throughout (and not just because of the intense knife fight in a sauna between a naked Nikolai and two thugs.). Nikolai’s body is covered in tattoos. As one of the characters says, “If you don’t have the tattoos (in a Russian prison), you don’t exist.”
The stars and onion domes we saw on Lucas’s body could be seen on Nikolia’s body. Both of these man had endured horrors most of us can only imagine.

For Lucas, the tattoos covering his flesh were part of the price he had to pay to survive those eight long years of torture and deprivation. I had a lot of respect for that character. No one goes through something like that without it taking a toll mentally, physically, emotionally.

Richard brought this flawed and damaged hero to life in a way that deeply moved me. I am sure becoming Lucas also took a certain toll on him. I am thankful for the complexity, intelligence and integrity he brought to the table. Thank you, Richard. Your Lucas will always be a hero for me.

Lucas North: ‘Know Thyself’ To Stay Alive

Quote
For JasRangoon–Green-Eyed Portah for your perusal

Bloodied, bruised, cut, sweaty, disheveled. Still gorgeous with defiance in those eyes.

No man should look so good in camo makeup and a watch cap.

Sgt. John Porter. Brave, heroic, resourceful, unrelenting, tough-as-nails and sexy as hell. And did we mention his eyes? JasRangoon did. We thought we’d share some of those images of a green-eyed Portah. Enjoy!

For JasRangoon–Green-Eyed Portah for your perusal

A true artist’s ‘Lust for Life’

Standard

Richard as Claude Monet in "The Impressionists."

One of his last paintings before Van Gogh took his own life.

These old boots remind me of my father's "brogans" and of high school art class still lifes.

One of Van Gogh's expressive self-portraits.

I am having trouble with my sleep yet again. And so, as I often do, I flip on the TV and go to Turner Classic Movies. It is one of my favorite satellite channels and right now they are presenting 31 Days of Oscar, with a plethora of award-winning films. It is a real feast for movie lovers.

This morning I saw for the first time the 1956 film, Lust for Life, based on the Irving Stone bio of brilliant-but-tortured post-Impressionist artist, Vincent Van Gogh. It is obvious that director Vincent Minnelli and crew had admiration and respect for Van Gogh’s talents and worked hard to get the right look for the film and also managed to remain reasonably faithful to Van Gogh’s true story.

Many museums and private owners allowed their Van Gogh paintings to be photographed for the movie. Shot in Metrocolor, it is inconcievable the film would have had the same breathtaking visual impact if shot in black & white. Van Gogh’s out-sized personality–his obsessive need for love and acceptance, passionate about capturing his artistic vision on canvas, driven by the inner demons of his mental illness that also drove people out of his life demanded a sweeping color canvas on film that matched the vividness of his paintings.

Kirk Douglas was nominated for an Oscar for his performance; having also seen Yul Brenner’s The King & I, I have to say I do consider Douglas’s the superior performance. He captured the intensity and passion of Vincent, his attempt to invest his canvases with an emotional honesty, with a life and vigor that practically leaps off the canvas.

Seeing Douglas’s performance as Van Gogh, I could not help but recall Richard as Monet in The Impressionists. Another one of my favorite artists, brilliantly portrayed. Both actors captured the artists’ “lust for life.” Who are some of your favorite artists?

Richard: Leather & Denim~A Match Made in Heaven for Me

Standard

Leather, denim, long legs--and that grin, Irresistible.

I agree, Richard. You (and your denim and leather) earn an enthusiastic thumbs up.

Richard talking to fans after a radio interview in London. His trusty ensemble of leather jacket, blue jeans and the briefcase (just what IS inside there?)

Is it the fact I first “met” Richard as Guy, he of the head-to-toe black leather? Or is it seeing him in his Lucas jeans, striding down the pavement, beautiful hands tucked into the front pockets? Is it recognizing his Porter leather jacket worn to one of his interviews? Is it the simplicity of the outfit–nothing flashy, nothing trendy–robing a body of classical male beauty? I don’t know. I just know I love seeing Richard in leather and denim. *sigh* *thud*