His performance in True Romance was something else, snatching a martyr’s personal victory from the jaws of hopeless defeat. (This scene is not for the faint of heart.) Bloodied, bound and beaten, he holds his own against Christopher fucking Walken. Both actors are at the top of their game, and despite its graphic language, the scene is a beautiful pissing contest. He who laughs last…
Here’s what I’m not doing: I’m not glorifying the violence his characters employed, or the extremely racist things his characters said, or the unholy misogyny his characters were capable of. What I am glorifying is his commitment as an actor. I believed every fucking word he ever said in character. Even the unspeakable filth. A good man can play a monster– which he did, on more than one occasion.
It was cancer that would ultimately claim him. (Considering that fucking dynamite didn’t scratch him; it would have to be something more insidious.) It’s unfortunate, and it’s sad, but that’s life. We all have to go, sooner or later. Dennis Hopper went, and he left his mark with a career that spanned more than fifty fucking years. And he did it his way.
So tell me… am I lying?