Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo

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Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo


Found By: Iolanthe

Viggo is now deep into editing Falling. Finally he has complete control of the finished look and performances of a film he is in after years of submitting unfinished pictures, as he described the actor's lot in 2002. So I was thinking - which films and performances does Viggo like to watch? We know that going to the cinema as a young man nudged him towards acting because he wanted to discover just how cinema magic was woven. But it's not all Dreyer, Bergman and Pasolini...





I went to see films with my mother when I was a child. Towards twenty, I lived for a year close to London, and I went to a cinema which only showed classics. I discovered Bergman, Ozu, Pasolini, Dreyer ... It was a revelation.'

Viggo Mortensen: The Soul of a Warrior
By Juliette Michaud
Studio Magazine
December 2002




"I started thinking about acting about a year before I actually tried it," he says. "I just started watching movies in a different way, not just as entertainment. I started to really think about the ones that got to me, the ones that transported me so that, when I walked out of the theater, I'd be surprised. I'm really not in the desert? Or the 18th century? And I started to wonder what's the trick, how does a movie do that to you, technically? I wanted to try and figure that out."

Viggo Mortensen on 'Two Faces of January,' LOTR and what his movies teach him
By Stephen Whitty
The Star-Ledger
21 September 2014




'I discovered [The Passion of Joan of Arc] when I was 20. I didn't know very much about movies, I wasn't even an actor: I wasn't yet measuring all of Dreyer's esthetic innovation and radicalism, but it still had a crazy effect on me. The story, the way it's told, but especially her, Falconetti: her modern way of acting, her immediacy. Whatever moment you're watching the film, she's there.'

Viggo talking about Dreyer's The Passion of Joan of Arc
"It's women who made me want to be an actor."
By Clélia Cohen - translated by Donna Marie
Vanity Fair (France)
June 2014




He opens a large cardboard box at his feet. There are about a dozen books... all are published by Perceval, a small press he runs with a partner. Then he pulls out a DVD of The Passion of Joan of Arc, a 1928 silent movie. He informs me that the original negative was destroyed in a fire, and that the filmmaker died believing his masterwork had been obliterated. But a complete version was found in a closet in a Norwegian mental institution in the early 1980s and was restored.

"You published this too?" I ask.

"Nah," he says. "You should just see it."

Finding Viggo
By Alex Kuczynski
Vanity Fair magazine
January 2004




"The real trigger for me was the film that everyone was talking about when I was twenty: The Deer Hunter, particularly Meryl Streep. What an inspiration! All the actors in that movie are amazing, no doubt; but there's something about Meryl Streep in that movie that makes me identify with her. I don't know why, something mysterious that you can't put your finger on, but which haunts you deeply, and for a long time..."

Viggo Mortensen: The Soul of a Warrior
By Juliette Michaud
Studio Magazine
December 2002




'Meryl Streep in Sophie's Choice, Jessica Lange in Frances, Liv Ullmann and Ingrid Bergman in Autumn Sonata, Anna Magnani... All of these roles have something indiscreet, indecent. You don't necessarily need to go through a series of tearful or hysterical scenes, it can be very sober and minimal, but this impression of seeing "inside" the person remains. This exposing of emotions touched me and inspired me very much.'

"It's women who made me want to be an actor."
By Clélia Cohen - translated by Donna Marie
Vanity Fair (France)
June 2014




"When I saw Death in Venice, by Visconti, I had a big shock. It is one of the movies that has really inspired me. I saw it again recently, it's a little dated, especially the flashbacks, but still ... That mixture of beauty and sadness ... And also the performance of Dirk Bogarde is so extraordinary! Its impact on me has been enormous."

Viggo Mortensen: The Soul of a Warrior
By Juliette Michaud
Studio Magazine
December 2002




It should come as no surprise to learn that Mortensen is an admirer of Greta Garbo, the "I vant to be alone" diva, and also John "The Duke" Wayne, star of Howard Hawks' Red River, a classic western and one of Mortensen's favourites.

"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




"I like Missouri Breaks. And Red River, a case, as in this movie, where most of the main actors are not known as "western" actors. Montgomery Clift had basically never done a movie, much less a western, and he's an urban easterner. He comes out stepping smack in the middle of John Wayne's turf, and working for Howard Hawks, he must have been a little nervous, I'm sure. But he did a great job. I think he pushed Wayne into giving my favorite Wayne performance."

An Actor Lured By Western Promise
By Ty Burr
Boston Globe
28 September 2008




'I think I insulted [Warren Robertson] one time, unintentionally, but he knew what I meant. The teacher had talked about a certain movie, I think it was a movie with Montgomery Clift... I can't remember. But anyway, I went to see it, and I remember saying, you know, "I learned as much from that movie as probably a month of going to class..."'

Viggo talking about his time at the Warren Robertson Theatre Workshop
Viggo's Box
By Craig Clevenger
Fond Affexxions #5
Winter Thaw 1995




'I'd call my mom, and she'd say, "How are you doing?" "Oh, fine." "What have you guys been doing?" "Well, Henry and I watched all three Godfather films. He didn't care for the third one, but he liked the first two." And she'd say, "Isn't he a little young for that?" "No, he can handle it.'

Viggo Mortensen: Grilled
By Steve Pond
The Wrap
25 November 2009




"I am an old romantic, and I love costume movies. Elizabeth is my favourite."

A Latin Man Comes From The North
By Riccardo Romani - translated by Cindalea
GQ (Italy)
May 2007




Are there special actors or movies that influenced you as a lad/young man?

(to do interview via email is a classic horror scenario because of the often very short answers, for example to a question like this. But Viggo Mortensen begins his answer with "Among others" and then mentions 88 movies and 63 actors. Very kindly he points out that nothing must be edited away. All mentioned, nobody forgot. )

Euroman Interview
11 August 2015




He tries... never to watch the same film twice. "You can spend your whole life looking at movies made outside the United States [alone] and never see them all," he marvels. There is at least one exception to this rule, however: Adam Sandler's 1996 comedy Happy Gilmore, which he will watch any day, any time. The very mention of it makes him launch into his own Sandler imitation, which isn't half bad. "It's just one of those charmed movies," he says.

History Teacher
By Missy Schwartz
Entertainment Weekly
19 August 2005



You will find all previous Quotables here.

© Viggo-Works/Iolanthe. Images © Emma McIntyre/Getty Images.

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Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo


Found By: Iolanthe

Watching Green Book last night, now the Blu-ray has finally been released in the UK (yay!), I found myself wondering at some point what my favourite review quote was. There is always one that lodges itself permanently in my memory for every film because I read through them so often. They are usually full of stonking great praise for Viggo’s acting, but they really stick in my mind because are clever, quirky and sometimes downright funny. Though Mark Kermode’s makes the list just because it is probably the best thing anyone said about Viggo ever. I know you will enjoy reading them again and maybe some of them are your favourites too?




Green Book

Mortensen, plump as a mortadella, doesn’t so much transcend the ethnic clichés of the role as chew through them, emerging into a zone of vaudevillian poetry.

By A O Scott
New York Times
15 November 2018



Captain Fantastic

He looks like the kind of guy who, yes, would worship Noam Chomsky, but he also looks like the kind of guy who would eat him for breakfast. It’s the ruggedly paradoxical, gentle-but-brute presence of Viggo Mortensen, more than anything else, that makes “Captain Fantastic” a twisting Rubik’s Cube of blue and red.

Owen Gleiberman
Variety
13 July 2016



Jauja

“Jauja” is also thrillingly beautiful, and graced with Mortensen, who seizes the imagination even when he’s sniffing horse manure.

Farran Smith Nehme
New York Post
18 March 2015



Two Faces of January

Viggo Mortensen surely wasn't just cast because he's a great actor; it's because no one can rock a 1960s cream linen suit quite like him.

Leigh Singer
IGN.com
19 May 2014



Todos Tenemos Un Plan

If you, for some reason, want to watch Viggo Mortensen watching Viggo Mortensen take a bath, then, my friend, your luck is in – as the renowned star of The Lord of the Rings franchise turns in one of the finest performances of his career, taking on the role(s) of identical twins in Ana Piterbarg’s intense, if somewhat unfulfilling drama Everybody Has a Plan.

Stefan Pape
Heyuguys.co.uk
28 May 2013



On the Road

Viggo Mortensen, priceless in Old Bull Lee / William Burroughs, highly intelligent and completely smoky.

Norbert Creutz
Le Temps
26 May 2012



A Dangerous Method

Viggo Mortensen has so much on-screen magnetism, he'll probably destroy the credit cards of anyone sitting in the first 10 rows.

Wallace Bain
Santa Cruz Sentinel
25 January 2012



The Road

When the world goes boom, I want Viggo Mortensen to be my dad.

Marshall Fine
Huffington Post
24 November 2009



Appaloosa

Mortensen, who steals this film by doing nothing much more than lean against doorways and bar counters.

Chuck Wilson
Village Voice
17 Septmeber 2008



Good

There’s a new Viggo Mortensen movie out and all is right with the world. It’s called Good and, as usual, he gives a mesmerising performance.

Jeffrey Lyons
Reel Talk
December 2008



Eastern Promises

Mortensen, with his slicked back pile of steely dark grey hair making his violin-like face look even longer, provides an unassailable core of authenticity and empathy throughout this often ludicrous film. He’s a master of minimalism – what most actors need a monologue to express, Mortensen can convey in one wordless close-up, from behind sunglasses. But a long, naked fight sequence? You’ve got to admire his balls. And now you can.

Ryan Gilbey
New Statesman
18 October 2007



Alatriste

Just seeing him stand there, his face half-obscured by a tattered black hat, his sculpted frame offset by a long cloak worn over the shoulders — it's no wonder Maria looks as though she's ready for cardiac arrest every time he appears.

Kaori Shoji
Japan Times
11 December 2008



A History of Violence

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



Hidalgo

It takes a thoroughbred star like Mortensen to make the bond between man and horses believable, and to keep Hidalgo from straying too far into fields of corn.

From hobbits to horses
Jennie Punter
The Globe and Mail
5 March 2004



The Lord of the Rings

This is Return of the King though, and Viggo is that king… Viggo is noble, Viggo is powerful, Viggo is resplendent. He's a young Sean Connery but with a grittier style. More than anyone else, this is Aragorn's film.

ROTK
Film Hobbit
Cinemablend.com
16 December 3003



You will find all previous Quotables here.

© Viggo-Works/Iolanthe. Images © Universal.

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Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo


Found By: Iolanthe

This week I'm looking back at a film which, alas, I still haven't seen because there is no version with English subtitles for Region 2 (and why not?) Loin Des Hommes. This is a film which Viggo was very eager to make. It's also one for which he requested a long preparation time, so determined was he to deliver convincing French and Arabic. Arabic, of course, was a new language for Viggo and he worked hard to create the correct regional dialect. Although fluent in French he then had to take the Québécois edge off it. Unsurprisingly it was David Oelhoffen who came up with one of my favourite quotes about Viggo: ...it's difficult for things to go wrong when you work with Viggo Mortensen.’





In Far From Men,Viggo Mortensen, his sharply planed face weathered and solemn, plays a man who looks as if he were quarried right out of the hard red-rock earth.

Manohla Dargis
New York Times
30 April 2015




it's a face that paints a thousand unknown memories)...

filmuforia
1 September 2014




I had dreamed of bringing Viggo Mortensen on board; his singularity made him the perfect fit for the role.’

Director David Oelhoffen
labiennale.org
21 August 2014




I'd seen him in a Spanish film called Captain Alatriste and I knew he could speak perfect Spanish. I didn't know he could speak any language on earth, but I always had his face in my mind for this character, it actually helped me to write the script.’

2015 Tribeca Film Festival Interview: David Oelhoffen
By Lia Fietza
Indiwood
25 April 2015




It was one of the easiest decisions I ever had as far as accepting a part. I felt fortunate that it had been offered to me.’

Viggo Mortensen
More Than a Movie: Far from Men Tells Important Human Story
By David Onda
Xfinity
24 April 2015




How long did it take you to master the French and Arabic?

I think I worked a lot. I worked for months and in Spain, where I live, I found someone who was from North Africa, and he helped me a lot. I looked at the whole script, and I made sure I could say it all in Arabic and made sure it was Arabic from that region.

Venice: Viggo Mortensen Talks Mastering New Languages
by Ariston Anderson
Hollywood Reporter
2 September 201
4



Is there nothing he cannot do?

Paul Byrnes
Sydney Morning Herald
31 July 2015




Sometimes I asked people I met on the street [in Algiers] or in the cafes about things that could help me to finish building the character in the film we are soon going to shoot in the Atlas mountains. Specific things about phrases or historical references in our script - trying out my very limited Arabic vocabulary, mixed with the French that I'm refining for the shoot - but in general just seeking out human contact, to go along touching, even if it was only ephemeral brushing against, the history of the many cultures that have passed through this city.’

Viggo on preparing to film while in Algiers
For It To Rain
By Viggo Mortensen and Fabián Casas - translated by Ollie and Zoe
Sobrevueloscuervos.com
19 October 2013




We always thought with Viggo Mortensen that Daru’s character was very close to Camus himself, a Camus who would have stayed in Algeria, with no Nobel prize and literary success, a Camus who would have become a teacher.

Interview: Far From MenDirector David Oelhoffen
Fliks
by Steve Newall
13 October 2015




[Darus] lived with the ugly side of people and has decided to distance himself from everything - violence, corruption, conflict, the evil side of things. He wants to do good, teaching Arab children to read. I understand that impulse, but no one can flee forever because life is finally going to seek us out.’

Viggo Mortensen: "Camus has the ability to plunge into the grey areas"
By José Manuel Cuéllar - translated by Ollie and Zoe
ABC.es - Hoy Cinema
2 October 2015




...the landscape pushed us together, and we're really small... I like that David chose to do several shots where we're so small, that you really have to look, even on a big screen -- we're that tiny -- when we're leaving the school...”

Viggo Mortensen
TIFF Q&A transcribed by Topaz
14 September 2014




Nobody moseys like Viggo Mortensen. In The Road, Appaloosa, Jauja, and the new French Western Far From Men, the erstwhile Aragorn masters the tricky art of being a figure in the landscape. When it comes to traipsing either purposefully or desperately across the widescreen frame, he’s several lengths ahead of the competition...

Adam Nayman
AV Club
30 April 2015




Viggo Mortensen is terrific as Daru. He shows the conflicts of a principled man living in an unprincipled time, almost exclusively through minor shifts of his face and eyes. Few actors can say as much as he can by saying little.

Dana Lemaste
Thinking Cinema
25 April 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.

Christos Tsiolkas
The Saturday Paper
31 July 2015




It's the kind of story that you can transpose to many places in the world right now,” says Mortensen. “These two people seem so different and so unlikely to be able to carry on a conversation, much less become friends, but it is possible, only it takes a certain amount of patience and a degree of forgetting oneself, and to really, really listen to someone else.”

Interview: Viggo Mortensen
Tobias Grey
The Financial Times
27 March 2015



You will find all previous Quotables here.

© Viggo-Works/Iolanthe. Images © One World Films.

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Viggo Mortensen talks directing debut 'Falling'; first look at family drama (exclusive)


Source: SCREENDAILY.
Found By: CoCo


Thanks to CoCo for the find.


Quote:

This week, Viggo Mortensen is heading to London to begin the editing process on Falling, his directorial debut.

0001fall.jpg
Image Caitlin Cronenberg.
© SCREENDAILY.
By TOM GRATER

This week, Viggo Mortensen is heading to London to begin the editing process on Falling, his directorial debut. The film, in which Mortensen stars with Lance Henriksen and Laura Linney (see an exclusive first look above), is about a conservative father who moves from his rural farm to live with his gay son's family in Los Angeles. The project is a very personal story, as Mortensen reveals in a catch-up with Screen.


"Both of my parents were ill. When my mother passed away, I was flying across the Atlantic after the funeral and I couldn't sleep, I was remembering things she had said that I hadn't thought of for years. The more I thought about my mother, the more I also thought about my dad, it became a back and forth between two characters and it became fictional, it wasn't them anymore," recalls Mortensen.

"That became the launching pad for a short story. I realised it was very visual, and if it was visual, it was a screenplay. I wrote it in two weeks and that was basically the screenplay we used. The route of it is my mother, and it becomes more about my father as it goes along. My father also passed away, two years after my mother," he adds.

Alongside his acting work, Mortensen has produced before, including on Ana Piterbarg's 2012 drama Everybody Has A Plan and Lisandro Alonso's western Jauja (he also produces Falling, with Daniel Bekerman and Chris Curling). Stepping into the director chair wasn't daunting, he says, because he could draw on watching "some very good ones [directors]" such as Peter Weir, Jane Campion and David Cronenberg.

Falling shot for 25 days in Canada and four days in California in March and April this year on a "very tight budget". Mortensen explains that everyone on the shoot "worked for the minimum [pay]", and that the money he made from the project has been reinvested into the production. "Unless this movie does unusually well someday, I won't make any money from it," he adds.

Financing

Mortensen would have preferred not to be in the film at all, he reveals, but having his name on the cast sheet was the only way to make it financially viable. "I would've preferred not to be in the movie, I have to say that, but to get it made one of the conditions was I had to act in it. I've been around for a long time as an actor, but if you haven't directed a movie you haven't directed a movie – I'm unproven and I'm lucky to get a chance," he says, adding that if he gets the opportunity to direct again, and he has to be in it for financial reasons, he'd rather "just do a scene or two".

London-based HanWay Films is overseeing international rights on the project and sealed a significant amount of territory deals during this year's European Film Market in Berlin, as Screen revealed. "It was more than we expected," admits Mortensen. UTA Independent Film Group is handling the US sale.

Mortensen hit the headlines earlier this month when he responded critically to the usage of an image of Aragon, the character he played in The Lord Of The Rings franchise, by Spanish far-right party Vox in a promotional tweet. The actor denounced the usage, calling it "ignorant" and "absurd".

Reflecting on that exchange, Mortensen says he "could have let it go" to avoid drawing publicity to Vox, but "sometimes it feels like you should call it out".
"These are the kinds of parties and movements that people like Steve Bannon are behind, it's a similar line of thinking, the rise of the irresponsible right. Vox are homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, anti-feminist, they essentially want to re-vindicate the Franco dictatorship. It's a dangerous thing," the actor explains.

© SCREENDAILY. Images © Caitlin Cronenberg.

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Iolanthe's Quotable Viggo


Found By: Iolanthe


Captain Fantastic is being broadcast on BBC 2 in the UK tomorrow night and although I have it on Blu-ray, I won't be able to resist watching. Which is just the excuse I need for some my favourite Fantastic quotes!



The clan's father isn't a superhero, but because he's played by Viggo Mortensen he's the next best thing.

Manohla Dargis
New York Times
7 July 2016




‘Viggo demonstrates the aspirations of the movie, what kind of movie are you hoping to make, and for me, I can have no better faith than in Viggo Mortensen.’

Matt Ross
Captain Fantastic: Viggo Mortensen and Matt Ross Interview
Jason Gorber
Dorkshelf.com
14 July 2016




“Getting to collaborate with him on Captain Fantastic is quite literally the best thing that's happened to me since my wife asked me to marry her.”

Matt Ross
Viggo Mortensen To Star In Electric City's Captain Fantastic’
By Mike Fleming Jnr
Deadline.com
20 February 2014




Viggo Mortensen gets the role he may well have been born to play, not as a superhero, but as a super-dad determined to raise his kids on his own terms.... The inspired choice of casting Mortensen, a natural Papa Bear, who taps into both his physical strength and spiritual gentleness.

Peter Debruge
Variety
23 January 2016




Mortensen, looking his most mountain-man handsome, is winning and charismatic, walking on the knife's edge between principled and unhinged.

Brian Moylan
The Guardian
31 January 2016




The director sent Mortensen a huge box of books of recommended reading, including texts by Tom Brown, the renowned naturalist and author of Tom Brown's Field Guide to Wilderness Survival; linguist and philosopher Noam Chomsky; and Pulitzer Prize-winning scientist and writer Jared Diamond, all of which he felt Ben would be intimately familiar with. “I thought that was a great way to frame some of the knowledge that this family would have, Ross says. “It turned out Viggo had read all the books already.”

Cannes Press Kit
May 2016




“...we had this two-day, one-night wilderness survival camp, with just the six of us kids and a guide, she said. “We each were given a knife and had to figure out how to survive. We had to track down our food, purify water, build a shelter. I love being outdoors, but this was pretty extreme.”

“We were building fires because in the forest it was so incredibly dark, Isler said. “All of a sudden, we heard these sounds and saw this shape coming toward us through the forest. It was Viggo, who said he wanted to bring us beef jerky and dried cherries. And we were all like, How in the world did you find us?’ ”

Tulsa teen actress Samantha Isler talks about her role in 'Captain Fantastic'
By James D Watts Jnr
Tulsa World
29 July 2016




‘I like gardening and I grow my own vegetables... I could say to Matt, If it's this time of year, this is how big the vegetables would be. This is what would grow in such a small clearing.” All those things you only see in passing, but it was important to him and to me that the way this family lives be completely credible.’

Viggo Mortensen goes 'extreme' in 'Captain Fantastic'
Josh Rottenberg
LA Times
30 June 2016




‘For Ben, you can alternate between what a great father and this guy's a maniac.’

Viggo Mortensen Goes Green: ‘I Trust Hillary About as Much as I Trust Donald Trump’
Marlo Stern
The Daily Beast
16 July 2016




He looks like the kind of guy who, yes, would worship Noam Chomsky, but he also looks like the kind of guy who would eat him for breakfast. It’s the ruggedly paradoxical, gentle-but-brute presence of Viggo Mortensen, more than anything else, that makes Captain Fantastic a twisting Rubik's Cube of blue and red.

Owen Gleiberman
Variety
13 July 2016




Making it endlessly watchable is Viggo Mortensen, here in his fully bearded, hippie-Viking mode.

Stephen Whitty
NJ.com
8 July 2016




“We rented a hotel room for him, but he never stayed there. We just knew he was in the forest somewhere. That kind of commitment really shows in his work.”

Producer Lynette Howell Taylor
Viggo Mortensen
Cannes Press Kit
May 2016




When he appears, caked in mud, looking like a kind of eco-Rambo, splashing barefoot through a river and cutting the heart out of a deer, you'll be thinking: Well, that's just Viggo Mortensen's life, isn't it?

Wild man Viggo Mortensen lets it all hang out in Captain Fantastic
Neala Johnson
Herald Sun
8 September 2016




“Just because it's not possible to be a perfect dad or to be Captain Fantastic, that doesn't mean it's not worth trying.”

In Captain Fantstic, Viggo Mortensen found more than a modern-day Mr. Mom’
By Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
15 July 2016




…the movie truly belongs to Mortensen; fierce and tender and tremendously flawed, he's fantastic.

Leah Greenblatt
Entertainment Weekly
7 July 2016




You will find all previous Quotables here.

© Viggo-Works/Iolanthe. Images © Wilson Webb/Bleecker Street.


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Last edited: 14 July 2019 19:40:07