All about Bridges

Posted by · 12:39 pm · February 8th, 2010

Jeff Bridges in StarmanI was happy to contribute this top 10 list of Jeff Bridges performances to Fandango’s Awards Watch section.  Those who follow me on Twitter may have noticed many a Tweet aboutt his Bridges film or that over the last few weeks, and that’s because I’ve been burying myself in his work once more while preparing for the piece.

My number one will never budge, but my number two and three are at times interchangeable.  But they’re all great, pitch-perfect performances.  Along the way, I realized what I kind of always knew.  You can always count on him to deliver, whatever the material might be.

Also, across the pond, The Times of London catches up with the actor (actually, they caught up with him in Santa Monica, but you get the picture).  It’s a great observation of the man and opens with a humorous account of a “celebrity-etiquette Mexican standoff” regarding an undelivered birthday party invite.  Good stuff.

More on Bridges and his fellow lead actor nominees in Wednesday’s edition of the Oscar Guide.  Meanwhile, spinning off my Fandango list, feel free to chime in with your list of favorite Bridges performances.

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27 responses so far

  • 1 2-08-2010 at 12:52 pm

    JJ said...

    Just back from ‘Crazy Heart’. I found the film, in general, to be entirely mediocre and conflict free. Gyllenhaal is good, as is Duvall, Colin Farrell also really impressed me.

    BUT, this is Jeff Bridges’ movie. I think it’s his best performance yet. And I sincerely hope he gets that Oscar next month. Everything about this performance was real, natural, & effortless.

  • 2 2-08-2010 at 1:02 pm

    curbur said...

    Good job including “BAD COMPANY”. But you missed several great Bridges perfomances. Three from the seventies come to mind: “RANCHO DELUXE”, “HEARTS OF THE WEST” and “STAY HUNGRY”. And I really don’t see how “THE CONTENDER” and “JAGGED EDGE” could rate higher than “THE FABULOUS BAKER BOYS” or “THE FISHER KING”.

  • 3 2-08-2010 at 1:11 pm

    JP said...

    I also finally caught Crazy Heart this weekend. I thought the film was very good but not great. And while I love Jeff Bridges, I wasn’t blown away by Bad Blake. I’m sad that A Single Man was never given the Weinstien push, because Firth is, for me, the perfomance of the year (and I found Moore to be much more compelling than Gyllenhaal in this case as well)

  • 4 2-08-2010 at 1:19 pm

    Mike said...

    Kris, first off I love all of the Jeff Bridges love. Like me, you have appreciated Jeff Bridges for a long time (not just this Oscar season like everyone else). He’s always been a “borderline” celeb to some extent so it’s always been hard to find anything much written about him.

    That all said, I was really surprised by your choice for number 1! I have always thought Starman was a cute movie with a great performance but certainly not the best from one of the best ever. But I respect your opinion nonetheless..

    For me, Fearless is one of the great performances of all time and Bridges’ best. It gets me every time I see it. I’m going to see Crazy Heart this week and hope it will rank among his best.

    I’ll be cheering for Jeff on Oscar night!

  • 5 2-08-2010 at 1:43 pm

    Trent said...

    What about Blown Away?

  • 6 2-08-2010 at 1:43 pm

    david said...

    I agree that the Fisher King should definitely have been on this list.

  • 7 2-08-2010 at 1:52 pm

    JR said...

    Yet another Bridges freak here! This one was thrilled to see Starman at #1. It’s the performance that sent me head over heels for the man. It’s not the usual pick – more than a few probably expected The Dude – but who else could have done it? For a moment, I think Depp, but he’d have seemed too otherworldly. Part of the magic of Bridges’ alien is that, at first glance, he does not seem otherworldly. Besides, the movie’s a great, honest weeper.

    Like Mike, I expected Fearless to be higher up there. Unforgettable performance… Still, this weekend I’m finally seeing Crazy Heart. Mom saw it last week in San Antonio and she raved. Her bullshit meter is so strong that Hurt Locker lost her once Renner left the base at night, and she has a near-irrational distaste for Streep, ever since she remained unmoved in Sophie’s Choice. After seeing Bridges’ Bad Blake, she said: “It’s like Sean Penn in Milk. He simply disappears into the role.” From Mom, there is no higher accolade for an actor.

  • 8 2-08-2010 at 1:52 pm

    Patryk said...

    “Fat City”

    “American Heart”

    “Winter Kills”

    Seek these out, and then tell me about under rated.

  • 9 2-08-2010 at 1:58 pm

    moviefan said...

    I agree with Mike, Fearless is still my #1 and I think Crazy Heart is now #2. The Fisher King would definitely be on my 10 Bridges’ Best list, as well as Lebowski, The Fabulous Baker Boys, Starman, The Contender, Thunderbolt and Lightfoot, and I’d have to re-check his imdb for the others. :)

    Fearless is one of the finest performances of all time, it’s right there with Russell Crowe’s Jeff Wigand, still his personal best, IMO.

  • 10 2-08-2010 at 2:00 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    It’s remarkable just how quickly one can fill this particular Top Ten in one’s mind. I can hardly argue with any choice here — but I’d still have to make room for “The Fabulous Baker Boys.”

  • 11 2-08-2010 at 2:13 pm

    Chad Hartigan said...

    I’ve only seen 8 Jeff Bridges movies and that includes The Muse.

  • 12 2-08-2010 at 2:16 pm

    JJ said...

    I, too, found Moore, or Morton better than Gyllenhaal.

    I liked Gyllenhaal, and I’m happy she finally has a nom, but she didn’t do it for me all the way in Crazy Heart.

  • 13 2-08-2010 at 2:32 pm

    Me. said...

    I also saw “Crazy Heart” this weekend. I loved it. The ending, with Bad Blake and Jean Craddock meeting one more time and the song “The Weary Kind” playing in the background was just beautiful.

    Jeff Bridges better win the Oscar! His performance as a drunken cowboy singer was so real, it felt like watching a real person in well-shot documentary footage. I also loved Maggie Gyllenhaal and the songs were spectacular (I don’t follow country so that’s good). Beautiful, natural film.

  • 14 2-08-2010 at 2:51 pm

    Danny King said...

    Definitely a lot to catch up on here.

  • 15 2-08-2010 at 2:57 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    curbur: What can I say? A list is a personal thing.

    Patryk: I’ve seen them all. Thanks for playing.

    The Fisher King performance, by the way, just missed. He’s great it in but, sue me, it’s tainted by being a part of an absolutely atrocious movie (yeah, I said it).

    Love Baker Boys, too, but I’ve always been much more impressed with Beau’s work.

  • 16 2-08-2010 at 3:10 pm

    Fitz said...

    The Big Lebowski to me should have been his Lead Actor Oscar, but what can I say?

    The Contender, Fisher King are close behind in greatness.

    Am I the only one who thought Moore’s performance in Single Man was pedestrian? She never really seemed to jump out.

  • 17 2-08-2010 at 3:24 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Yay, I’m no longer the only person in the world who doesn’t like “The Fisher King.”

    I’m scarred for life by Robin Williams’s nude dance scene.

  • 18 2-08-2010 at 3:40 pm

    Robert Hamer said...

    @ Guy: How absurd was it to see Robin Williams get the Oscar nomination over Bridges for that film?

    @ everyone who picked Fearless as their #1: It’s so awesome to see this performance get its due. The movie itself has a lot of flaws, but he does such a fantastic job using his star charisma as post-traumatic mental illness, and that last scene where he finally snaps back to reality….breathtaking.

  • 19 2-08-2010 at 3:44 pm

    Kristopher Tapley said...

    When I asked on Twitter for everyone’s favorite Bridges performance, Fearless actually came out on top. I’m not a huge fan of the film, but I was fascinated by what he did with that part.

    The final scene is a hair-raising moment, though. Without a doubt.

  • 20 2-08-2010 at 4:27 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Robert: For sure. But that was when the Academy was in the midst of its weird crush on Williams — three noms in five years! (All leading to that win six years later that I still can’t talk about.)

  • 21 2-08-2010 at 5:08 pm

    Guy Lodge said...

    Okay, you’ve inspired me to commit.

    1. The Big Lebowski
    2. The Door in the Floor
    3. The Fabulous Baker Boys
    4. American Heart
    5. The Last Picture Show
    6. Fearless
    7. Bad Company
    8. Crazy Heart
    9. Cutter’s Way
    10. Tucker: The Man and His Dream

  • 22 2-08-2010 at 5:09 pm

    The InSneider said...

    They aren’t Bridges’ best performances, but I came to love the guy for the thriller-ish trio of THE VANISHING, BLOWN AWAY and ARLINGTON ROAD.

  • 23 2-08-2010 at 5:10 pm

    The InSneider said...

    Although that Boston accent in Blown Away is ALL over the place.

  • 24 2-08-2010 at 5:26 pm

    david said...

    I thought Robin Williams performance in The Fisher King was one of the few good things he ever did.

  • 25 2-08-2010 at 5:38 pm

    rosengje said...

    I detest The Fisher King.

    Sad to see his work in The Last Picture Show miss, as it is one of my all-time favorite movies.

  • 26 2-08-2010 at 6:55 pm

    Fitz said...

    Oh how did I forget Door in the Floor?!

  • 27 2-14-2010 at 9:00 pm

    sosgemini said...

    Okay, I’m going to admit something: I actually got a lil teary eyed thinking of the ending of Fearless reading everyone’s comments. Now. That’s. A. Performance!