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The Kurt Russell Bio

The Kurt Russell Review –

by Nate Lee

Best Film:


Actually, you could argue, with lots of evidence, that every film but "Miracle" is the real Russell. But, other than "Bull Durham," which was written for him but then given to Kevin Costner to partially ruin, there is no real sports film that ably captures the true actor turned minor-league ball player turned actor. So, his next favorite sport (and one his son is a professional in), hockey, will have to suffice. Besides, there must be enough of the single-minded pursuit of gold (or, sometimes, Goldie) that Kurt shares with his best character that allowed him to play the role so brilliantly.

Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
Grindhouse (a crazy driver)
Used Cars (crafty and crooked salesman of cars that break down)
Breakdown (searching for his wife after his car breaks down)
Dark Blue (a cop whose morals have broken down)
Tequila Sunrise (a good cop, in a triangle with Mel Gibson and Michelle Pfeiffer)
Dreamer (a horse expert)
Kurt the Cool Disney Boy:
Follow Me, Boys (a boy scout)
The Barefoot Executive (an accidental television-network executive)
The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes (an accidentally smart guy)
The Strongest Man in the World (an accidentally strong guy)
Kurt the Cool John Carpenter Star:
Elvis (made-for-TV movie and an Emmy-nominated performance)
Escape from New York
The Thing
Big Trouble in Little China
Escape from L.A.
Kurt the Cool Funny Guy:
Swing Shift (hooked back up with Goldie)
Captain Ron (opposite Martin Short)
Overboard (with Goldie again)
Sky High (the strongest dad in the world)
Next-Best Films:
Vanilla Sky
Acting Style:
He was no Mouseketeer, Kurt Russell, but he was pals with Walt and started playing young tough or comic heroic types for Disney films at the age of nine. So, it's not a big surprise to hear that Goldie's beau eschews the craft of acting. He, after all, just does it.

Like Jeff Bridges, the other Disney boy whom many people confuse with Russell, he made it past the post-adolescence that dooms most child actors, to the realm of movie stardom. Russell, in fact, is one of those stars that remind one of the great Peter O'Toole line in "My Favorite Year": I'm not an actor, I'm a movie star.

We enjoy just watching Kurt Russell play tough or play cool or play swagger, and, like him, don't really worry about craft or no craft – except for one thing. Miracle! The Disney movie, "Miracle," that is. Yes, it is irony that brings the young Disney male ingénue back home to prove that he can be a brilliant actor, after all. He so completely "channels" (as other writers have put it) Herb Brooks, the coach of the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team, that it is something more and less than a miracle. It is Kurt Russell's craft.
Bits and Quirks:
The shrug of the shoulders, often with the head cocked at an angle. The mischievous wide grin, and the slight grin with his head down, and the side-grin. The chest out and the hands on his hips or in his back pockets, sometimes with a gentle sway forward and back.
Great Scenes:
Sky High

> Congratulating his son for finding his super powers
> Taking him down to the "sanctum sanctorum"


> The Christmas party
> Keeping the players after the game until all of them finally understand who they are skating for
> The game against the Russians


> Reading the story in the class
> The quiet moments with Dakota
> The RACE

3000 Miles to Graceland

> Kurt lip-synching to Elvis's "Such A Night" (or possibly it's Kurt himself) in the final credits


> The famous slow-motion shot of Kurt coming out of a flaming building carrying a little boy
> Trying to save Scott Glenn

Go to the... Kurt Russell Bio