Best Movie With (1) Character

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I'd say only one character, but I doubt there are many movies that fir that criteria. I'm thinking of "Secret Honor" - where there is only one actor in the entire film. I think it's one of Robert Altman's better movies, very underrated, might even watch it now right after watching a movie.

If it's too tough for you to think of one, you can wiggle the criteria. It doesn't have to be great, either.




Bright light. Bright light. Uh oh.
I wrote this before.
Give 'Em Hell, Harry! (Steve Binder & Peter H. Hunt, 1975)


One of the true sins of this DVD era is that this awesome film is not available in the format. This seems to make it difficult as hell to show some of the wonderful images of James Whitmore portraying President Harry S. Truman right here. I have the VHS, and since it IS a filmed document of a play, DVD probably doesn't matter too much, but this is easily one of the funniest, most-powerful, and best-acted films ever shown in theatres. The fact that it's a one-man performance is only semi-unique. However, it is the only film representation of a one-man stage show to ever receive a nomination for a Best Actor Oscar, so in that way, it's historically-significant.

Nowadays, most people know James Whitmore as the tragic Brooks Hatlen in The Shawshank Redemption, but he's been an excellent film actor since 1949; he even received a Best Supporting Actor nom for his second film, William Wellman's gritty WWII flick Battleground. Whitmore also made a name for himself on stage playing Will Rogers and Teddy Roosevelt, the latter which was also turned into a one-man movie, Bully, a solid film which is apparently available in NO format whatsoever.

However, I believe that James Whitmore's greatest performance can be found in his total embodiment of the plain-speaking, honest and defiant Harry S. Truman, who became President in 1945 after FDR died. Truman was in office during the dropping of the A-Bombs on Japan, the beginning of the Cold War, the Korean War and the McCarthy Era. He was also involved in Missouri politics for decades before he became Vice-President. This film is filled with Truman's own words, which are very blunt, full of strong swear words (at least for the time) and incredibly funny when they aren't bringing a tear to your eye.

Harry Truman was a politician back when that wasn't a dirty word, or, at least, he lived the life of a politician as an honest man. In this day and age, it seems almost surreal. Truman didn't cowtow to anyone, and that's part of what makes this film so thrilling to watch. Whitmore's acting is certainly terrific, but the script/play is inspired in how it makes Truman a totally-living-and-breathing character that anyone can look up to, regardless of one's politics, nationality or age.The film is presented in two acts, and the first act is crammed with some of Truman's most famous quotes, especially those of the humorous variety. Act II turns a bit more serious when Truman talks about three separate run-ins with the Ku Klux Klan in his home state where his life was threatened for preaching equal rights for African Americans. These scenes should rivet any audience. Then, he has more problems with General MacArthur (who seemed to believe he was Miilitary Dictator of the U.S.) in Korea and the witch hunter Joseph McCarthy.

I'm not sure how you're supposed to watch this terrific film. I first saw it at the theatre, even before Whitmore was nominated for an Oscar. Sure, I was disappointed at the time that none of the three actors fron Jaws and Gene Hackman in French Connection II weren't nominated for Best Actor, but as the years go by, this performance and film grow stronger and more-personally significant to me. I really hope that you can watch this film ASAP. You can always come and visit me, and we'll watch my copy. It should give you goosebumps. Besides, I'll let you pull my beard and ask me questions about leprechauns.



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Thank you, Mark, for the write-up, and the link. Luckily I have this new flat screen my sister gave me, and I have an HDMI cable so I don't have to watch it on my laptop. I had something else in mind, but I think I'll try to watch this first!

I see a few mentions for "Locke" which I saw while looking yesterday. Is the movie good? I've been trying to be more diverse as possible, trying to see more "original" stuff, even if it's not a 10.



Welcome to the human race...
I reviewed Locke last year and gave it a
in the process. I'd say that it's good, if not necessarily great, and worth one viewing.
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I really just want you all angry and confused the whole time.



I agree with Iro's assessment of Locke. I love how it builds tension through the fairly mundane. Hardy is very good. It's a movie I think about even this far removed. Not something I will go back to often, if ever, though.

I feel the same way about Phone Booth.

Not sure if those are the kind of movies your thinking about but they are what pop into my head when you say one character.
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I agree with Iro's assessment of Locke. I love how it builds tension through the fairly mundane. Hardy is very good. It's a movie I think about even this far removed. Not something I will go back to often, if ever, though.

I feel the same way about Phone Booth.

Not sure if those are the kind of movies your thinking about but they are what pop into my head when you say one character.
I remember the previews for Phone Booth, and someone mentioned it as being in real-time, which are usually good movies. I love your Top 10 - I either love/like every single film..

Here's a silly question? Is your avatar of Mitt Romney? (it does look like him a bit if he was younger



Professional horse shoe straightener
Locke is awful. I honestly thought he was supposed to be Russian until I read reviews purporting him to be Welsh!

3/10



I have to return some videotapes...


I can't remember, but I believe Buried (2010) doesn't have any actual other characters.
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Ha, no it's Elliot Gould from The Long Goodbye
I should have read the text underneath! Altman has done one of my favorite movies, and after my 1st viewing, I really liked "The Long Goodbye"



I should have read the text underneath! Altman has done one of my favorite movies, and after my 1st viewing, I really liked "The Long Goodbye"
I have so much more Altman to see but I love Nashville, Long Goodbye, McCabe, and Short Cuts. MASH and 3 Women are both really solid.