The Best Worst Last Films by Legendary Actors
DEATH is a terrible inevitability. You could pop your considerable clogs at any given moment. You might be half way through a banana. You could be mid-poo, like Elvis. You could be *this close* to finishing that computer game that proved so difficult all those years. You might suddenly die just before someone finishes a joke.
Worse than all these things put together, is when great actors die before they’ve had the chance to do one last film that is any good.
There’s a whole host of brilliant actors who have been in absolute crap – Robert De Niro in ‘The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle’, Michael Caine in ‘Jaws: The Revenge’, Kevin Spacey in ‘Fred Claus’, Faye Dunaway in ‘Dunston Checks In’ and Al Pacino in Adam Sandler’s beyond woeful ‘Jack & Jill’.
However, they all got another shot at correcting the blips on their showreels.
Sadly, there’s legendary thesps who went and died, bowing out on some pretty awful dreck. It is only fair that we should dredge these films back up and remind everyone that, sadly, the last thing you contribute to the human race might be a load of old shit.
Orson Welles is a proper, bona fide legend of the silver screen. We all know about Citizen Kane, but what about him finishing his career as the voice of a large robot orb in the pretty crappy animated ’80s Transformers: The Movie? Eric Idle also provides a voice in the film.
A marvellous, respected actor who went too soon. While it is true that Julia hadn’t outstayed his welcome and we certainly weren’t finished with him when he died too young, Raoul’s last role was that of M. Bison in the dreadful Street Fighter film with Kylie Minogue and Jean Claude Van Damme. The poor shit.
Another living legend, Paul Newman exited stage left in his role as Doc Hudson in ‘Cars’. It is a little unfair to say ‘Cars’ is a pile of crap, but it does seem beneath Newman to bow out on a film that only Pixar fans truly enjoy.
Crazy Dennis Hopper, part of cinemas reinvention in the ’60s and ’70s, famed for his roles in Apocalypse Now and Easy Rider, left the world with his last acting credit as ‘Tony’ from the supremely dire ‘Alpha & Omega’, an animated romp about some bloody wolves. Still, it probably paid for the buffet at his wake.
One of Hollywood’s leading ladies, Joan Crawford ended her career with the craptacular British horror film, ‘Trog’. Now, to some, crap British horror films are better than any other genre, but to scholars of film, they’d probably wished she’d ended on a more refined note. Tough cheese.
John Candy is another fine actor who left us too soon. Star of the wonderful Uncle Buck, Spaceballs and Trains Planes & Automobiles (and more), Candy’s last film was the awful ‘Wagons East’. If only he’d lived a little longer to eradicate that from his CV.
Marlon Brando may have been immense in the Godfather and grippingly dynamic in A Streetcar Named Desire, but alas, Brando’s last gig was to appear in Michael Jackson’s ‘You Rock My World’ video (so not a film as such, but worthy of inclusion). He appears as the boss, before MJ indulges himself in a protracted dance scene when you’re dying for someone to throw a punch. Ah well.