Containing Multitudes Since 2004
Armendariz was the most important male Mexican star, ever, IMHO. He was influential and talented as hell. He may not have been the charro image like Negrete, (the Mexican James Dean) but he was very believable and had a killer smile. A copy of the poster for Armendariz's "Juan Charrasqueado" was in my Dad's best friend's hallway in San Manuel when I was kid, and I was fascinated by it for years. I thought it was a some Eastern European production for years until I found out who Miroslava was. It took almost thirty years for me to see the film itself!
These films do indeed look awesome, I've never seen an Armendariz title myself, all that seems to get released up here are masked wrestler movies, and the occasional Rene Cardona atrocity for children.I posted this partially in honour of B.A. "Voice of a Generation" Johnston, who sings a song about being a sushi bar fry cook who accidently fries up his own hand in tempura batter and serves it up for lunch. Although B.A. is still in posession of both armly extremeties, he performs this particular tune wearing a plastic hook from a dollar store pirate costume.A class act, all the way.
Actually you probably have. Armendariz did three films with John Wayne: Three Godfathers, Fort Apache, and The Conqueror, and his last film role was as Kerim Bey in From Russia With Love. Of course I'm pretty sure that what you really meant to say was that you've never seen one of the many Mexican films that Armendariz made. He had an extremely active career before his suicide (a death he preferred to cancer - he was one of the 91 people associated with The Conqueror to die of cancer.)
Okay, you got me there, Brent. I've seen all four of the films you mentioned. But no, I've never seen any of his starring films. And I had heard of his suicide, very sad as he's so good in all of those roles.
His films are hard to see, hell most of the Golden Age ones are, unless you can make it to a Spanish language theater when there is a retrospective or film festival, but I'm seeing more on DVD, albeit without subtitles. When I was younger, some of the good one were playing often in the cheap theaters in the "wrong" parts of towns down by the Border, and boy, it was unsettling to be one of the few Anglos at a showing. That said, I only caught a few Golden Age films, as by then they were out of "style" mostly. There were some pretty salacious "modern" films taking up most of the screen time. I depended upon a Mexican-American friend to translate, then, as I never have picked up the language, altho they tended to move right along and one could generally follow the plot visually. I prolly got a better translation than subtitles would've supplied, anyway. ;-) BCNU
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