Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Rediscovering the Past: James Cagney: Not So Much Yankee, A Lot Doodle Dandy

Another oldie but goodie, this one originally appeared in November 13 of 2008 and marks another instance in which I irrationally dwell on some actor of yesteryear, focusing an unhealthy amount of energy on someone who hasn't been relevant in roughly fifty years. 
Not buying what he's selling.
I don't know if I could count the times I've engaged in a conversation with my friend Chad about how difficult it is to buy guys like Edward G. Robinson or James Cagney as tough guys.

Chad hates Edward G. Robinson. Loathes everything he stands for. Thinks EGR is a mama's boy. Begrudgingly allows for him to have been all right in Double Indemnity but won't go further than that. I pretty much agree with those sentiments. If you need to hate the man, here's a clip:

What the hell is with him here?

Where Chad hates every fiber of what was Edward G. Robinson's being, I fucking despise James Cagney. Now, I don't hate him as much as I hate Ray Milland. That's simply not possible, but I would like to re-animate James Cagney's corpse just so I could kick his zombie ass. In every movie he was in, he just oozes overacting dandy trying to come across as a tough guy. Moreover, look at the guy.

How did anyone think that little POS was tough?

It is possible that I should have prefaced this entry into the annals of retarded blog entries by stating that I have quite a few old school Hollywood figures that I hold an irrational hatred for--Rod Taylor, Tippi Hedren, the aforementioned Ray Milland--but the point still remains that these two "tough guys" are dandies through and through. The thing I don't get is how the Greatest Generation bought these little douchebags as tough. I honestly think anyone who came up during the Great Depression could kick just about anyone's ass nowadays. They were tougher times, and it was probably a lot more common in regular society to have to get into a scrape here and there. Hell, most of these guys would have been ashamed if they couldn't go off to war. None of us pussies want to go off to war. But these tough old motherfuckers--these tough Robert Mitchum-like dudes--bought James Cagney as a tough guy.

What the fuck?

1 comment:

Humphrey Bogart said...

EGR and Cagney are major cornholes!

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