Wednesday 3 February 2010

The second in a series of several "What About's"...

Following on from Willie Ross in 'Rita, Sue and Bob Too'.
Our next post focuses on a young Tim Roth in seldom seen 80s flick The Hit. *contains spoilers*

The Hit (1984) Stephen Frears
John Hurt, Terence Stamp, Tim Roth, Laura Del Sol
Released in 1984 and directed by Stephen Frears, the crime caper (which has recently been released on Criterion dvd) Stars Terence Stamp in the lead role as Willie Parker ex-gangster turned grass who's hiding out in Spain under protective custody.

Retribution arrives in the form of John Hurt as Braddock a hitman sent to hunt him down 10 years after the crime boss and his cohorts are released and ably assisted by Roth's character Myron.

The role of Myron was originally intended for Joe Strummer of The Clash, he turned it down but recommended Tim Roth after seeing his portrayal of Trevor the skinhead in Alan Clarke's 'Made In Britain'. This was Tim Roth's first theatrical outing aged 22 but he had already done two highly rated TV films working for two of England's greatest directors. The aforementioned Made In Britain and Mike Leigh's excellent 'Meantime' before going on to establish himself as a very reliable actor both in mainstream Hollywood and also mixing it with the grittier independent projects which, to his credit he continues to do.

Following this role Roth was nominated for a BAFTA for 'most outstanding newcomer to Film'
Myron is a rookie learning the ropes alongside Braddock's experienced ageing hitman. At times his age and youthfulness get the better of him. The film plays out like a road movie of sorts as the three men interact before the inevitable will occur. The film is pretty simplistic in it's approach but the dialogue between the three leads adds to a very interesting and underrated gem, not to mention the location which plays a large part in the whole thing. The film of course looking back has aged, it's proper mid-80s wardrobe is on show here. Hurt wears a sharp linen suit, slicked back hair and naturally in the blistering sun, topped off with sunglasses. Roth less identikit with bleached blonde hair and 80's aviator sunglasses, polo shirt, members only style grey leather jacket inside the pockets an array of weaponry including his favoured choice of handgun and cosh!

Myron attracts the local's attention ...

and objects to them taking the 'michael'...

He calmly empties his pockets and lays out his tools on the bar...

which consist of a kung fu star, and some other nasty looking implements.

...before kicking shit out of them all and running off with the beers!

Eventually when no longer needed and the job is done,
Myron meets his unexpected, untimely end...

Tim Roth Selected Filmography:
Funny Games (US 2007)
Youth Without Youth (2007)
Don't Come Knocking (2005)
Gridlock'd (1997)
No Way Home (1996)
Rob Roy (1995)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Reservoir Dogs (1992)
Rosentcratz and Guildenstern Are Dead (1990)
Vincent & Theo (1990)
The Hit (1984)
Meantime (1984)
Made In Britain (1982)

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