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Richard Attenborough, 1923 – 2014

Richard Attenborough, who guided Gandhi to 8 Oscars including 2 for himself, has died at the age of 90. In 1947 he played a lowlife yob in Brighton Rock, one of my favorite films noir and #15 on the BFI list of Best British films of all time.

11 Comments on this Post

  1. Very sad year for celebrity deaths.

    I enjoyed Gandhi quite a bit, especially for Kingsley’s amazing performance. I thank Attenborough for bringing that extraordinary life to the big screen.

  2. seattlemoviegoer

    i’m still in awe of his ability to orchestrate the largest single sequence (people-wise) in the history of cinema…Gandhi’s funeral scene. unbelievable. his films were hit or miss (and A CHORUS LINE was a huge miss) but he brought us some great pleasures over the years. thinking about YOUNG WINSTON, SHADOWLANDS, and others. goodnight Sir Richard…

  3. Watermelons

    RIP Richard Attenborough. Hamlet (1996) stands out as the best film he is in, but his role as the harmless grandpa in Jurassic Park is the one that will stay with me.

    – Watermelons

  4. One of the great dramatic actors is gone. Somewhere he is in Jurassic park.

  5. His role in ‘Jurassic Park’ was toned down. In Michael Crichton’s novel the character that that Attenborough played is a greedy, self obsessed maniac. n the film he comes across as a harmless person. I prefer his character in the novel. i His main contribution to cinemas is ‘Gandhi’.

  6. check out an extraordinary 1964 film he was in, and great in,
    Seance on a Wet Afternoon — a creepy kidnapping thriller starring the brilliant Kim Stanley, nominated best actress (and should have won)

  7. Profile photo of Ryan Adams

    dylan, yes! I watched Seance on a Wet Afternoon with my mom just this morning!

    Kim Stanley won other awards for that role. National Board of Review and New York Film Critics. BAFTA nomination.

  8. seattlemoviegoer

    one more thing…the little ditty he performed in 1967’s DOCTOR DOLITTLE was stuck in my head all through my childhood. he saw the Pushmi-Pullyu and exclaimed, “I’ve Never Seen Anything Like it in Me Life!”

  9. steve50

    He must be one of the most-employed actors. ever. From the 40s to the end of the 70s, hardly a year went by where he didn’t appear in a film.

    Attenborough always made his supporting parts bigger than they were written. Not is best, but my favourite, was Joe Orton’s farce, Loot, from 1970. Totally overplayed by all, Attenborough tops everyone with his Truscott-of-the-Yard, huffing and harumphing and acting dumber than the 2X4 one assumed was up his butt. The scenes between him and Remick looked like they were having the time of their lives.

  10. For me, his best performance was given in “The Great Escape”.
    A great film, and a great performance by Attenborough.

    Recently, his narration on the PBS special about birds was really charming.

    A delightful man.

  11. I just remembered that Richard Attenborough also directed a most beautiful film in 1994 with Anthony Hopkins and Debra Winger. It was called “Shadowlands”. It is a little seen film which I encourage all of you to watch sometime when you want a good cry.

    Attenborough was a really sensitive director. Being an actor himself, I think he knew how to put his cast at ease and get the best work out of them. “Shadowlands” contains two very wonderful career-high performances from Hopkins and Winger.

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