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The Tommy Lee Jones Bio

The Tommy Lee Jones Review –

by Nate Lee

Best Films:

The Fugitive / Men in Black

Jones's award-winning performance as the U.S. Marshal on the trail of fugitive Harrison Ford is as responsible for the film's success as is Ford's performance. His larger-than-life character is one of film's best cops. Likewise, his canny straightforward style in MIB works as juxtaposition to the over-the-top alien criminals.

Great Performances You May Not Have Seen:
Back Roads (drifter with a dream, opposite Sally Field)
Natural Born Killers (a crazy warden)
In the Electric Mist (Southern detective tracking a serial killer)
Black Moon Rising (thief with a cool car working for the FBI)
Blue Sky (a career Army captain in a dissolving marriage to Jessica Lange)
The Client (federal attorney up against Susan Sarandon)
In the Valley of Elah (Oscar-nominated performance as a father looking for his AWOL son)
Heaven & Earth (Vietnam vet having difficulty adjusting to civilian life)
The Cowboy Tommy Lee:
Lonesome Dove (Golden Globe-nominated performance as Woodrow Cole, with Danny Glover and Robert Duvall)
No Country for Old Men (Texas sheriff tracking down killer Javier Bardem and Josh Brolin, whom Bardem is after, in SAG-winning ensemble)
The Hunted (Special Forces soldier tracking down Benicio del Toro, a student who went off the deep end)
The Missing (1880s (technically, an Indian) tracker tracking down an Indian who has abducted his granddaughter)
Space Cowboys (hotshot pilot, now geriatric astronaut, with Clint Eastwood)
The Biographical Jones:
The Amazing Howard Hughes (Howard Hughes)
The Executioner's Song (Gary Gilmore)
Cobb (Ty Cobb)
Coal Miner's Daughter (Golden Globe-nominated performance as Loretta Lynn's supportive husband, Mooney, opposite Sissy Spacek)
JFK (Oscar-nominated performance as Clay Shaw)
Men in Black, I & II (Agent Kay)
The Fugitive (Golden Globe and Oscar-winning performance as U.S. Marshal Sam Gerard, on the trail of Harrison Ford)
U.S. Marshals (Gerard, again, in the sequel to "The Fugitive")
Rules of Engagement (lawyer defending pal Samuel Jackson against all odds)
Batman Forever (Two Face)
Eyes of Laura Mars (detective helping psychic Faye Dunaway)
Under Siege (disgruntled ex-CIA operative out to steal nukes)
The Real Tommy Lee Jones:
Lonesome Dove

The cum laude Harvard grad and Broadway actor retains more of Texas than his famous accent. He has a ranch near San Antonio where, among other things, he raises polo ponies, for one of his favorite sports.
Acting Style:
The cowboy, tracker and sheriff. In Fugitive, he was still a Wild West sheriff, tracking down his man, as he has literally done in a half-dozen movies. In "Space Cowboys," as the name implies, Jones worked the macho as well as his pal Clint. His world-weary sheriff in "No Country for Old Men," tracking down Javier Bardem, bookends his "Fugitive" marshal.
Bits and Quirks:
When it calls for it, a crazy leer with huge smile. Staring off in the distance, usually forlornly. Great Southern accent, which he uses to be even more macho, or friendly but serious, or just a good guy. Likes speeches, and his vocal range is a real hook in them, especially when he delivers in the higher twangy registers.
Great Scenes:
No Country For Old Men

> Lots of great pithy sayings
> Looking over the drug deal gone wrong
> The ending, talking about the dream

The Fugitive

> The "inn house, outhouse" speech to all the law-enforcement personnel
> Catching Harrison Ford in the pipe, just before Ford jumps

In The Valley of Elah

> Explaining the meaning of an upside-down flag to a school custodian who is a new citizen
> Putting the flag up at the end

Space Cowboys

> The "Fly me to the Moon" ending
> The centrifugal-force contest with Eastwood
> Flying the shuttle simulator, and landing it without the computer

Rules of Engagement

> Inspecting the scene of the crime, and the clinic
> The final scene, with Guy Pearce
> Squaring off in the courtroom with his speeches
> Repeatedly asking in the trial, "where's the tape?"

Men in Black I & II

> The opening, interviewing the aliens to see if any of them are "aliens"
> Meeting and hanging with Will Smith at the beginning
> Showing Smith the ropes, including the jet car
> Blowing Tony Shalhoub's head off
> The showdown at the end of I
> The post-office lecture, and the post-office reveal of all alien workers
> The big flush
> Going into the family's house to get armaments

Natural Born Killers

> Caught in the prison riot
> Giving a tour of the prison
> Baiting Juliette Lewis
> Chasing Woody Harrelson
> The news conference

In the Electric Mist

> Grilling John Goodman
> Talking to Goodman in the restaurant while he's having Goodman's car towed 

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