Lucky 13 Film Club: Jeff Bridges

Welcome! Join Australian movie buff LLOYD MARKEN and I as we steer April’s discussion to the ten best films of one of the more charismatic actors since 1971–Jeff Bridges. How do you narrow down his ten best performances? Lloyd will feature five nominations and I’ll provide five. Then you tell us your favorites and why.

All you need to do is pledge to watch a Jeff Bridges film you HAVEN’T seen and revisit one you have. Then, stop by on the 13th of April and join the discussion. Everyone is welcome. 

64 Comments on “Lucky 13 Film Club: Jeff Bridges

  1. I think anyone who can play Starman and actually make the character believable – has GOT to be a great actor!!

  2. I’m not sure I can commit to the assignment but I shall try to join Lucky 13 all the same Cindy 🙂

    • Of course, Ruth. I’ll not give you bad marks if you don’t ;). I remember you have a blindspot “The Last Picture Show” some time this year. He did some sexy roles as leading man–“Against All Odds” was one. I might revisit that one; I haven’t seen it since it came out in the 80s. Whatever you contribute will be appreciated. 🙂

    • Ha! I never saw the television series, but I understand it’s pretty good. Did you like it? Also, did you like Fat City or The Iceman Commeth? I know you don’t care for Huston, and you’ve responded positively to O’Neill. Do you recommend either?

      • i loved fat city.. for the iceman cometh, i would recommend the lee marvin version, although the definitive, with jason robards, was never filmed. I liked sea hunt but was just a kid when it was on, so it wasn’t neccesarily any good. there is a retarded trumpet player in seattle who collected all the sound cues for sea hunt,and was thrilled to meet jeff bridges, who he christened “son of sea hunt.”

      • i just found that the jeff bridges iceman is the lee marvin version. i dont even remember bridges being in it. you should see it, though. a great play, and frankenheimer is a good director. as for huston, his is not a bad director, just an over-rated one. and he directed some outstanding movies, but they are outstanding for reasons other than his directing.

          • Bull City. AKA Fat City? American Heart is my favorite of his characters, if not his best movie. He and Kurt Russell were the only actors I felt any kinship with in the 80’s.

          • Oops. Yes, I thought he was authentic.we should talk about cohosting something for June. What would appeal yo you? I was thinking something foreign but agreeable yo something that finds you inspired…..

          • i think the best 13 subjects are the open-ended ones that give the participants a lot of leeway in terms of what the want to discuss. so how about lay adaptations in general and i could write a piece on the symbiotic relationships between plays on television, plays in the theatre, and plays adapted to cinema…and people can talk about their favorite adaptation as such……

          • That sounds great, Bill. I enjoy variation; some like specific films, specific actors, specific themes, etc. I did like the evolution of the femme fatale and look forward to this open-ended topic. June 13 is all yours!

      • maybe ill check out the episode. thanks for the link. by the way, i also liked lassie,sky king, and a lot of other stupid shows when i was a little kid

        • We all loved stupid shows. What did I watch as a kid other than cartoons? Star Trek, Hogan’s Heroes, Happy Days and MAS*H and reruns of the B/W like Leave it to Beaver and I Dream of Jeannie.

          • leave it to beaver was quite good; the donna reed show was stupid, but ozzie and harriet was the best of the family shows. why? because of ricky nelson, of course.

  3. Ohh … I thought you were gone! Welcome back back! Anyhow, Bridges is one of my all-time favorite actors! My top 3: I’m partial to his alien in Starman (1984). He makes you believe that he doesn’t belong in his own body — brilliant, absolutely brilliant stuff. He managed to steal Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974) from Eastwood and Co., and I thought he was unforgettable in American Heart (1992).

  4. This one interests me greatly, Cundy. Despite the Oscar win and numerous nominations, I still think that Bridges is shamefully underrated. He’s one of my very favourite actors.

    • We are in total agreement. He bolsters any mediocre film to something that’s special and makes a good film great. There’s a few I have not seen and looking forward to watching for the first time. Hope you can come back on the 13th and participate. 🙂

  5. I’ve always been a big fan of Jeff Bridges and your post inspired me to rent “True Grit”, which I’m ashamed to say I hadn’t seen. Watched it last night. Fabulous! I look forward to 13th 🙂

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  7. Mr. Bridges has put together a fine body of work, Cindy.

    First saw him and his brother, Beau on ‘Sea Hunt’. First time on film was ‘The Last Picture Show’. THE date night film at the time. And still one of the most laid back, comfortable and confident actors in front of a camera today.

    A master of clumsy, klutzy, insect like under playing in ‘Starman’. Superb opposite Stacy Keach in ‘Fat City’. And a spoiled Kennedy-esque man child in ‘Winter Kills’. And John Hurt’s back up in the California Neo Noir, ‘Cutter’s Way’. Which really should have stuck with the original novel’s title ‘Cutter & Bone’.

    Pushed the limits in the little seen, ‘Fearless’. And played a politician too comfortable with power in ‘The Contender’.
    While holding his own and more with Clint Eastwood. And later, John Huston and the spirit of John Wayne.

    Not bad. Not bad at all.

    Best work is ‘The Big Lebowski’. Where the Coen brothers gave Mr. Bridges plenty of room and time to romp and play!

    • Well, Kevin, what will you say on the 13th? 😉
      I just watched ‘Fearless’ last night. A Peter Weir film. I focused on Bridges’s performance and it was solid. The whole film flickered instead of flamed, but I liked the concept of it. I blame it on the writing and not the cast or director. I am watching ‘The Contender’ tonight and ‘Fat City’ soon. Thanks for the input before the 13th–if you can come back and add more to your initial thoughts, we’d be happy to have you.

    • it did stick with the novel’s title. then the company changed it to cutter’s way…but it has since been changed back in several markets

  8. I like Jeff. For most of his career he was good – a Star .. but never quite a SuperStar. Did good stuff and could carry a movie but … always seemed short of outright acclaim. Then … finally the spotlight found him. Still does some ‘iffy’ projects – like Seventh Son, but Crazy Heart was very good. Not sure what motivated him try and reprise John Wayne’s role of Cogburn though. ???

    • Let’s talk about this on April 13! It’s an excellent question and I would love it to be part of the day’s discussion. Can you come back on the 13th?

  9. Has anyone seen “K-Pax?” It is interesting (and would make an interesting double feature with “Starman”). I won’t say that it is a great film, but it is enjoyable and rarely mentioned.

    • Jeff Bridges has been in a lot of mediocre films–probably more than stellar ones. Yet, he is highly regarded. This is an aspect I want to discuss on April 13. I hope you return for the big discussion!

    • Jeff Bridges has been in a lot of mediocre films–probably more than stellar ones over his long career. Yet, he is popular and hasn’t lost his star power. This is an aspect I want to discuss on April 13. I hope you return for the big discussion! Have you seen Tideland, the Terry Gilliam film? I wonder if it’s worth watching? Or Ridley Scott’s White Squall?

    • I saw K-Pax at the movies believe it or not. I recall it all those years ago being a good film if not a particularly exciting one. I do think it is a good example of how Bridges is often used to play the straight man or audience surrogate opposite a star performance. I believe he’s a very generous actor in that sense. Looking forward to hearing what everybody else thinks on the 13th.

  10. I think my family liked “Tucker,” the man and his dream or something like this. Creative mind but sad side story, too.
    I liked “Crazy Heart” as well as Jeff and brother Beau in the dueling piano movie, “The Fabulous Baker Boys,” with sexy blonde, Michelle Pfeiffer.
    I really liked the complexities in characters in, “The Fisher King,” Cindy. But, definitely “Fearless” was given accolades between 3 1/2 stars and 4. My brother likes “The Big Lebowski.” 😀

  11. Hmmm I don’t know what one I’ll see first, dunno about that. The one I’ll revisit though will definitely The Fisher King, haven’t seen it for ages!

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