We’re nearing the end of the Christopher Plummer Movie Blogathon, which has been a really fun experience both for me and (I hope) the many bloggers who have taken part in it. There have been some great blogs posted in the past two days, covering even more ground in our favorite Canadian thespian’s amazing 60-year film career. Here’s what’s been going on lately, going in chronological order of the films covered.
First, MovieRob, who has gone absolutely nuts during this blogathon with four Plummer film reviews so far (and two more since then), considers the 1966 thriller Triple Cross. I had never heard of this movie, much less seen it, but I’m interested to read that it’s a World War II spy thriller; I have a little bit of experience with WWII spy stories, so this intrigued me. Here’s an excerpt from Rob’s review.
My Take on it – This is not your typical film about World War II; it’s also not a typical spy story and isn’t what you would expect from a movie about a thief yet it excels so well in all three cases.
The way they tell this story is great because we never really know the real motives of the main character along the way because his only allegiance is to himself instead of God and country….
Christopher Plummer tho is truly the star as the lead because he is able to really make us believe that his character cares about absolutely nothing or no one.
The unique perspective of a spy thriller that this story gives us is truly refreshing and it’s entertaining the whole way through since so many unexpected twists and turns along the way keep changing everything for us.
Rob also samples a Plummer film I have seen, the 1969 war epic The Battle of Britain. Here’s a bit from his take.
My Take on it – I have always been a big fan of historical films and was looking forward to watching this film and learning much about the famous battle over the skies of England.
The idea is a brilliant one but the main problem here is that the movie doesn’t focus enough on set characters but instead tries to introduce us to such a large array of characters that we aren’t able to get to know them well enough and therefore care less what eventually happens to them during the course of the engagement.
I’m aware of the fact that warfare is meant to be chaotic and much of the action happens quite quickly but if we don’t have developed characters, it’s much more difficult to care what will occur to them in the film.
The aerial footage shot for this film is amazing and it’s too bad that such a lovely filmed movie lacks a clear storyline and character development….
Finally, we have not one but two analyses of one of my all time favorite Plummer roles: that of Chang, a Klingon general in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. The Midnite Drive-In Blog connects the film, and Plummer specifically, to the cultural and political undercurrents roiling in the wake of the Cold War. Here’s an excerpt:
While Plummer does not evince the mania or pure menace of Khan from the earlier Star Trek movie, he still manages to leave a mark on the viewing audience. And I absolutely love every time a Shakespearean, or other literary quote is used in the movie (of which there are several. See how many you can identify). One of the best lines in the movie is when one of the Klingons says you can’t appreciate Shakespeare “until you’ve read him in the original Klingon”…:-D
Plummer has the neatest look of any Klingon ever portrayed on film, too. That’s him in the banner at the head of this entry. Who wouldn’t want to go hang out at the bar with a cat who looks that menacing? You could keep all the riff-raff away with just his look.
Lastly, Carl at the Listening to Film blog analyzes Star Trek VI but drills into how and why Plummer was uniquely suited to play Chang, and what his background and particular talents brought to the role:
As an actor who comes from theater, Plummer was the ideal choice to play a Klingon general with a penchant for quoting from the works of Shakespeare (even if they are not, as he remarks in the film, in the “original Klingon”). Unlike some of Trek’s more one-note villains, Chang is at various times cordial, cunning, or ruthless. Plummer’s theater background is most evident in the trial scene, where Chang is called upon to prosecute a case against Captain Kirk and Doctor McCoy for the assassination of the Klingon chancellor. He shows tremendous range here, from quiet and almost chatty when he discusses the amount of Romulan ale consumed by McCoy prior to the attack to bombastic when, in perhaps the most famous exchange in the scene, he evokes Adlai Stevenson II’s famous remark to Russian Ambassador Zorin by yelling at Kirk, “…don’t wait for the translation! Answer me now!!!”
This blogathon has really been an embarrassment of riches. I’ve been loving everyone’s different and unique takes on the films and on Plummer’s multivaried career. Thanks so much to everyone who has participated. Only one more day to go!