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Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo

1 February 2020 14:23:13
Found By: Iolanthe
Categories: Media Quotable Viggo

We know Viggo is a one-off original but it’s surprising how often he’s compared to the great actors of Hollywood’s heyday. Most often to one of my favourite silver screen actors, Gary Cooper. I think it’s a tribute to the huge range of his acting skills that he’s been compared to everyone from James Dean to Robert Mitchum. Just for fun – because we know he’s not really like any of them - I’ve pulled some of them together. It makes for rather a long Quotable and a few are quite surprising!




John Wayne and Harrison Ford

With his aqua blue eyes and chiseled jaw, he is every bit the American film hero - a Harrison Ford or a John Wayne, but with a darkness lurking beneath.....

Sasha Stone
Santa Monica Mirror
28 September 2005




Hands down, this is the best performance that Viggo Mortensen has given in a film yet. He is just breath-taking in the film......Viggo's acting here reminds me of vintage Harrison Ford, before... whatever happened to him. Think WITNESS or maybe even THE FUGITIVE. He's just very very good.

A History of Violence review
Harry
Ain't it Cool News
28 September 2005




A wonderful reflection on the evocative power of cinema. And, incidentally, the umpteenth confirmation of Viggo Mortensen´s great talent. Mustachioed , astride his horse in a cavalry uniform, sword in sheath and a splendid hat on his head, he is reminiscent of John Wayne in the early John Ford films.

Jauja review
Franck Nouchi - translated by Ollie and Zoe
Le Monde
19 May 2014



Gary Cooper

There’s a scene in that film, Eastern Promises, where his character, Nikolai, stubs a cigarette out on his own tongue. At that moment, all was made clear: Mortensen was an old-fashioned star, as confident and as taciturn as Gary Cooper.

Viggo Mortensen
By David Thomson
The Guardian
10 April 2009




Mortensen, who became a hunky heartthrob as the warrior Aragorn in the "Lord of the Rings" series, carries himself like Gary Cooper here, radiating earthy charm and easy humor, as well as a quiet determination.

James Sanford
Kalamazoo Gazette
2004




Mortensen again proves to be one of today’s few actors who can evoke quiet self-sufficiency and absolute resolution, à la Gary Cooper. The odd fragility of his features—he truly looks here like a man who has been reduced by solitude and ascetic living to the barest necessary husk of self—convinces us totally that Daru is a modern anchorite as well as an ex-soldier who has known terrible times.

Loin des Hommes review
Jonathan Romney
Film Comment
1 May 2015




Mortensen has a heroic presence but he is also unafraid of conveying an almost feline grace. There are moments in this film when he reminded me of the young Gary Cooper, and of Steve McQueen, two other actors who convincingly integrated sensuality and masculinity. These are qualities he shares with Kateb, and when they are together on screen their interaction is absolutely riveting.

Loin des Hommes review
Christos Tsiolkas
The Saturday Paper
31 July 2015



De Niro and Brando


Fantastic performance from Viggo Mortensen.....he is absolutely a brilliant actor, he is the Robert de Niro of his generation, the Marlon Brando of his generation, the man is a genius.

Mark Kermode
BBC Radio Five Live
30 September 2005




Mortensen's interpretation, in Penn's film "The Indian Runner', of Frank, a Vietnam veteran who cannot adapt to civilian life, an habitual rebel, mutinous, violent, alcoholic, but at the same time vulnerable and touching, is perfect. His presence is both incandescent and dignified, recalling that of Robert de Niro in Scorcese's "Mean Streets'.

Viggo Mortensen: The magician of The Lord of the Rings
by Aurelie Raya
Paris Match
8 Jan 2004




Even acting-wise, comparisons will be made between Viggo Mortensen's quietly menacing Mafioso to that of the young Robert De Niro in "The Godfather Part II," who morphs into Marlon Brando's Don Vitto Corleone in the first chapter of the epic saga, "The Godfather" (1972)

History of Violence review
Emanuel Levy
emanuellevy.com
1 Sept 2007




'To me, there's a lack of self-consciousness to the great actors. I think the performance of Viggo Mortensen in Eastern Promises is brilliant: he's living the guy's life on screen and you can't take your eyes off him. It's the same with Marlon Brando. You might not know why you're drawn to him, but you are.'

Actor Richard Jenkins commenting on Viggo
Metrolife film
29 June 2008



Clint Eastwood


He's just somebody I spotted as having a kind of appeal that I don't see a lot of actors having anymore. It's just mainly from when I grew up that I'm always on the prowl for guys who could kind of play the roles Clint Eastwood played 30 years ago. And he sort of seems to be that kind - with some real serious acting chops.

Josh Olson on Viggo Mortensen
Interview with Jock Olson
by Rebecca Murray
About.com
August 2005




Viggo, speaking vintage Castillian Spanish with his own voice, dominates the film as a kind of Medieval Clint Eastwood, short on words, long on deadly action when required…

Viggo Mortensen - Heroic On And Off Screen
By Alex Deleon
Fest21
16 October 2006




He's got the cowboy drawl down pat; shoots a Colt .45 with confidence; delivers sharp one-liners like a kinder, gentler Clint Eastwood; and has a great seat on a horse. Even when the movie gets a little slow--and it does, a 3000-mile desert race will do that to a movie--Mortensen's onscreen appeal saves the day.

Hidalgo
Leigh Johnson
Hollywood.com



James Dean


I was looking for a young James Dean. Then, Viggo Mortensen walked into the room. I knew almost instantly that he was the one. There was such a charisma about him.

Review Fix Exclusive: Q & A With “Prison” Director Renny Harlin
Patrick Hickey Jr.
Review Fix
14 February 2013




If Jack Kerouac looked like a matinee idol - who in fact turned out to be a really good actor - he'd be a lot like Viggo Mortensen. But if James Dean wrote poetry and took pictures, he'd be closer.

Vim and Viggo
By Merle Ginsberg
W
September 1997




Great things have been predicted for Mortensen: his good friend Michael Blake, who wrote Dances With Wolves, has called him 'the new James Dean'.

Sean Penn Bites Back
By Christopher Connelly
Premier
October 1991



Robert Mitchum and William Holden


"He is methodical, exacting in his work, he carries out meticulous labors to do something that looks true, and projects it. He is like Robert Mitchum or William Holden, the class of actors whose work seems effortless."

Ray Loriga
Chiaroscuro: Viggo, Light And Dark
By Rocio Garcia - translated by Graciela, Remolina, Sage and Zooey
El Pais
26 June 2009




Mortensen tends to play listeners – whether the laconic adventurer-king Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings, or Nikolai, his Russian mobster in David Cronenberg's Eastern Promises.

It's part of what makes the 55-year-old Danish-American star an old-fashioned sort of movie idol. He's cut from the same chiselled, masculine material as Robert Mitchum, with whom he shares a dimpled chin and a taste for complex heroes.

The Two Faces of January
By Tim Robey
The Telegraph
15 May 2014



And what does Viggo think?


HP: Does it mean anything to you when large movie magazines compare you with Clint Eastwood, John Wayne and James Stewart? And say that you have the same "uugrundelige", under the surface madness?

VM: That's something, but you need to be lucky. If it happens you say "thank you", but you can never count on it.

Go'Aften Danmark Interview
TV2
By - transcribed/translated by Rosen
23 September 2007




"I just think John Wayne was wonderful, and I'm not looking at him as just this icon," said the chisel-jawed actor, a study in seriousness behind innocent blue eyes.

A New John Wayne: Viggo Mortensen Saddles Up for Hidalgo
By Peter Howell
Toronto Star
5 March 2004




Joe Johnson said that you reminded him of a matinee idol of a bygone era, such as Gary Cooper, how does that make you feel?

Very flattered, because they are very good actors. What they were good at, beyond what they looked like, or whatever their presence, is the same thing that I admire in Omar Sharif, which is a kind of acting that is often under-rated and under-valued.

Hidalgo - Viggo Mortensen Q&A
Indie London
By Jack Foley
2004



You will find all previous Quotables here.

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Source: https://www.viggo-works.com/?page=243