To celebrate the release of supernatural action blockbuster R.I.P.D., starring Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds this week FilmJuice takes a look at ten of Jeff Bridges’ most memorable performances …
Until Starman, Director John Carpenter was better known as the man who gave the world Halloween and The Thing. However, this was the film that proved not only could Carpenter turn his hand to any genre – and make a hit – but that sci-fi could be as bitter-sweet as any rom-com. Bridges plays the ‘starman’ who has come to Earth in response to the invitation on the gold record embedded on the Voyager 2 space probe. The film was a huge international hit and won Bridges Oscar and Golden Globe nominations.
The Big Lebowski (1998)
In what was to be Bridge’s first collaboration with the legendary Coen Brothers, Bridges created a character that has since developed a cult following. In a film that boasts more swear words than any other … Bridges plays Jeff Lebowski, an unemployed Los Angeles slacker, who goes by the moniker ‘the Dude’. Legend has it that, in real life, the Dude and Bridges shared not only the same wardrobe but habits. So much so, that when the Bridges children first saw the film, they were convinced that the Coens must have been spying on their father!
The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989)
Starring Jeff and his real life brother, Beau Bridges, this 1980s romantic comedy paired the duo with Michelle Pfeiffer to create cinematic dynamite. Critics were divided but filmgoers loved this modern day homage to the old school Hollywood musical.
A science fiction/mystery film, K-PAX tells the story of a psychiatric patient who claims to be an alien from the planet K-PAX. Jeff Bridges plays the psychiatrist, Dr. Mark Powell, who is both impressed and confused by his patient’s claims. Bridges, again, delivers a convincing performance in a surprisingly low-key role for such an esteemed actor.
Seabiscuit is the American biographical sports drama film based on the best-selling non-fiction book Seabiscuit: AnAmerican Legend by Laura Hillenbrand. Bridges plays the character of Charles S. Howard, an American businessman who made his fortune as an automobile dealer, before becaming a prominent Thoroughbred racehorse owner. Bridges was nominated for two awards for his role, including the Satellite Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Iron Man (2008)
Iron Man, directed by Jon Favreau, was Bridge’s first foray into the superhero universe and it turned out to be a standout role. Bridges plays Stark Industries’ executive gone-bad, Obadiah Stane, who arranges for Stark to be kidnapped and killed. Bridges had read the comics as a boy and liked Favreau’s modern, realistic approach. He shaved his head and grew a grey beard for the role, which was something he had wanted to do for some time. Bridges was again nominated for the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Crazy Heart (2009)
Based on the 1987 novel of the same name, Jeff Bridges plays a down-and-out country music singer-songwriter who tries to turn his life around after beginning a relationship with a young journalist played by Maggie Gyllenhaal. Bridges’ character, Otis ‘Bad’ Blake, is an alcoholic and a heavy smoker whose habits have pushed his loved ones away, including his new partner’s four-year-old son, Buddy. Jeff Bridges won the Academy Award for Best Actor for this role, as well as a Golden Globe and several other notable awards.
True Grit (2010)
Jeff Bridges starred as Reuben J. “Rooster” Cogburn in this Coen Brother’s remake of the John Wayne classic. Cogburn is a one-eyed, drunken Marshal with a larger than life persona and it’s a role that, arguably, Bridges was born to play. The veteran actor received thirteen nominations for his role, including an Academy Award for Best Actor and a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role.
Tron: Legacy (2010)
Tron: Legacy tells the story of Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund) who must enter the virtual world of Tron in his search for his long-lost father, Kevin, played by Bridges. Legacy was the long-awaited sequel to 1982’s Tron and gave Bridges the opportunity to play opposite a younger, CGI-generated version of himself! The film won Bridges the Saturn award for Best Actor and there are already rumours that the actor is set to return for a further sequel.
R.I.P.D. (2013) (Main Picture)
Jeff Bridges plays Roycephus “Roy” Pulsipher, a grouchy but skilful ex-U.S. Marshal from way back in the wild, wild West. Roy is a veteran of the R.I.P.D. – the undead police force – and one of his jobs is to teach the new guys the ropes. Appearing both mentally and physically unhinged, Bridges delivers a performance packed with trademark humour. The film also sees him voice his characters’ undercover personas- that of a beautiful woman, played by Marisa Miller – leading to some laugh out loud scenes.
Don’t miss R.I.P.D. as it explodes onto 2-disc 2D and 3D Blu-ray™, and DVD – both with UltraViolet – on the 20th January 2014!