Skip to main content

Leo and Me

Nearly all of us have had a celebrity crush (or two) in our day. For some it was James Dean, for others it was Farrah Fawcett. For yours truly it was Leonardo DiCaprio. Living alone during the early-to-mid-nineties, I would pine over the (many) photo shoots Leo had done as an up & coming young actor. So, yeah, I thought he was cute. Then again, a lot of actors are cute. Leo has always had something more.

Indeed, pre-Titanic DiCaprio has always been my favorite version of Leo. Before that supremely popular ship set sail (see what I did there?), Leo's resume was full of quirky, quality films. The likes of What's Eating Gilbert Grape, This Boy's Life, Basketball Diaries, The Quick and the Dead, Romeo + Juliet and Total Eclipse are enough for any actor to be proud of. His post-Titanic career is almost icing on the cake.

Consider the character of young Toby from This Boy's Life. Attached to his mom, he goes with her as she remarries, and is forced to endure an abusive step-father (Robert DeNiro). Seemingly heterosexual, he seems to take the advances of local gay teen in stride. The scene when he and his mother finally break free of the step-father is a cathartic experience I could relate to.

What of Leo's portrayal of Jim Carroll in the true-to-life Basketball Diaries? That was a difficult film to watch. To witness the character's descent into drug addiction and prostitution was uncomfortable and heartbreaking, but then it was supposed to be. It's a gritty, uncompromising performance.

And, of course, there's Leo's turn as poet Arthur Rimbaud in 1995's period piece Total Eclipse. Playing opposite David Thewlis as Paul Verlaine, the film unflinchingly follows Verlaine & Rimbaud's tumultuous relationship. Leo is young, arrogant, sexy and, at the very least, bisexual in this movie, and has a nude scene and a same-sex kiss. It's the sort of edgy role that he wouldn't really take-on post-Titanic.

Leonardo DiCaprio is one of my very favorite actors. He's cute, he's talented, and he served as my celebrity crush for a number of years back in the '90s. I've enjoyed nearly everything he's been in and, while he certainly needed no validation from the Academy Awards, it was still nice to see him have his moment last night. Truly well-deserved.


Popular posts from this blog


Ok, we're now three-fourths of the way through this year's calendar, so I thought I'd rank the thirty-eight 2017 movies I've seen so far.

Here they are....

1. A Quiet Passion
2. Baby Driver
3. Dunkirk
4. Get Out
5. Kedi
6. A Ghost Story
7. Wonder Woman
8. Columbus
9. Brad's Status
10. Marjorie Prime
11. Maudie
12. Logan
13. Spider-Man: Homecoming
14. Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2
15. Brigsby Bear
16. Atomic Blonde
17. The Big Sick
18. Split
19. Kong: Skull Island
20. It
21. Wind River
22. A Cure for Wellness
23. The Hitman's Bodyguard
24. Norman
25. Kingsman: The Golden Circle
26. Logan Lucky
27. Alien Covenant
28. Ghost In the Shell
29. War for the Planet of the Apes
30. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales
31. Life
32. Annabelle: Creation
33. Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
34. My Cousin Rachel
35. Baywatch
36. The Bye Bye Man
37. mother!
38. It Comes at Night

It will be interesting to see what the last three months of the year brin…

Walk and Chew Gum

Yesterday marked a touchstone moment in the U.S., as students across the country participated in "walkouts." This was an occasion for students to express an array of thoughts and emotions, ranging from a desire for stricter gun control, to simply sorrow over the loss of so many of their peers to school shootings. They were peaceful protests, but protests nonetheless. Where you're at on the spectrum of agreeing or disagreeing with what they did may vary, though not wanting to get shot in your school seems pretty reasonable to me.
Some folks have taken to sharing a meme on social media platforms this week -- in direct anticipation and response to the walkouts -- that encourages students to "walk up, not out." Following are suggestions provided for the walk ups:

Walk UP to the kid who sits ALONE and ask him to join your groupWalk UP to the kid who never has a voluntary partner and offer to be hersWalk UP to your teachers and thank them!Walk UP to someone and JUST …

The Best Superhero Movies of All-Time, Revisited

We are just a few days away from the North American release of Avengers:Infinity War. While I am dutifully going to see it opening night, it's not a film I'm looking forward to. It is (spoiler) part one of two, which means we can expect plenty of plot threads left dangling when the credits roll. In other words, part two will probably be better, and provide some actual resolution. Also, Thanos looks like a CGI yawn-fest. Hopefully, I'll be proved wrong.
Nevertheless, this is a good opportunity to rank (again) the major superhero movies (Marvel and otherwise) that we've had so far. As you know, I love making a list, and this one is going to be a definitive one! If you don't see a film on here, it's because I haven't seen it (the first two Thors, Iron Man 2, some of the X-Men features, etc.).   Alright, here we go.