Tuesday, July 10, 2012

My Ode to Ernest Borgnine

This one is personal. I’ve had a crush on Ernest Borgnine for as long as I can remember. It didn’t matter what role he played. It was that big, gap-toothed smile. Those intense, sensitive eyes. That well-upholstered build that just looked too warm and snuggly. I adored him.

But I never watched McHale’s Navy. That was deplorably silly - the worst possible use of his considerable talents. The fever-pitched overacting, the stupid story lines…how could an Oscar-winner like Ernie stoop to such a thing? Yeah, I know. Everyone needs to work.
Years later I was thrilled when he picked up a much more substantial action role in Airwolf with Jan-Michael Vincent. At last he was back – and in something I could enjoy watching! There were other things since, but regretfully, not much.

On Jan. 24, 2007, Borgnine celebrated his 90th birthday with a party for friends and family at a West Hollywood bistro. During an interview at the time, Borgnine complained that he wanted to continue acting but most studio executives kept asking, "Is he still alive?"

"I just want to do more work," he said. "Every time I step in front of a camera I feel young again. I really do. It keeps your mind active and it keeps you going."

I loved these reader comments from the Huffington Post:
A truly superior actor! He was unique in his style and character. He could make us laugh or cry. He possessed the timeless acting skills that allowed him to successfully play any role.

What a powerhouse of an actor! He was the benchmark for a good male actor - always commanding in each of his roles, no matter what script he was given.

Sistagirl Young:
Loved him in Marty.
Hated him in From Here to Eternity.
Mark of a great actor to engender those emotions.

Ernest Borgnine passed away Sunday, July 8, at the age of 95.

No comments: