Friday, August 30, 2013


Sam Rockwell has become one of my favorite actors working today. He isn't scared to try all sorts of movies and different genres and I really like almost every role I have seen him in. He chooses movies that work for him but are also usually well made or quirky. Here are some of my favorite roles of his, in no real order:

 Guy Fleegman in Galaxy Quest (1999) . This or The Green Mile was the first movie I remember seeing Mr. Rockwell act in. It is hard to say since both came out in 1999 and I am not sure which one I saw first. I really thought he stood out in Galaxy Quest with his pencil thin mustache as the guy who surely was going to die. In a movie loaded with A list Hollywood talent (Tim Allen, Alan Rickman, Sigourney Waver) Rockwell stood out as Guy. Rockwell was whiny and annoying as Guy but also made you care enough about him to not see him want to die. In the end Guy helps save the day and makes this movie all the more enjoyable showing he can get it done in comedies.

Billy in Seven Psychopaths (2012). Another movie with tons of talented actors (Colin Farrell, Woody Harrelson, and Christopher Walken) in which Rockwell stood out. Billy is pretty much a guy who knows what kind of death he wants and will make sure he gets his ending no matter what. Rockwell plays Billy batshit crazy but in the way that you can't help but be intrigued by him and his amazing acting. One second he will cold and cunning and the next cracking jokes with his friends. The role shows depth and makes you wonder is Billy really good, bad, or possibly both?

Owen in the Way Way Back (2013). A recent role in a drama with lots of humor. Rockwell plays Owen the owner of a water park. Owen is the guy who never wants to grow up but also likes to help people who he thinks need some encouragement. This movie would have been just another typical film if it wasn't for Rockwell's masterful performance as Owen. I know its not likely to happen but I would vote for him for a supporting role Oscar for this, lord knows he is due. I won't say too much more because the movie is well done and Rockwell gives a legendary performance in this one. Go see it as soon as you can. Just writing this made me want to see this one again just for Rockwell (the rest of the movie is good too).

Sam Bell in Moon (2009). Moon is very underrated Sci-Fi film about a man stuck in a space station on the Moon. I do not want to give away too much here but all Rockwell has to work with in this movie is himself and a computer (think HAL-9000) voiced by Kevin Spacey. Sam starts to see things in all his isolation on the moon and stuff gets complicated. Rockwell plays this role with great humor but also this is a very dramatic role touching on isolation and sadness. Rockwell could have been given a nomination for this role, but again went without notice. A powerful and endearing movie and role for Mr. Rockwell.

Karl in the Sitter (2011). I am probably in the minority here with loving this movie. The Sitter is a goofy comedy that hearkens back to some of the earlier and much funnier Adam Sandler movies. This time Jonah is baby sitting some kids and ends up owing drug dealer Karl some money. Rockwell isn't the main star but again steals every scene he is in as Karl. Karl is a guy who wants you to like him and if you don't he might want to kill you. I love how Rockwell can do a powerhouse role like Sam in Moon and then go and do a hilarious villain in The Sitter.

Other Notable Roles:

Chuck Barris in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002). I saw this one once and liked it but it has been eleven years since then and I cannot really recall the acting.

Wild Bill Wharton in the Green Mile (1999). Rockwell's jump to fame year, he did this and Galaxy Quest showing off his comedic and dramatic side. Rockwell is a total sleaze in this movie and you will love to hate him as man on death row.

Frank Mercer in Matchstick Men (2003). Another movie I saw a long time ago just once. I think I liked this one. Rockwell plays opposite Nicholas Cage, so I can't see how it wouldn't be good.

Zaphod Beeblebrox in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (2005). I remember not liking this movie all that much but Rockwell did stand out as having most of the funny moments. I will have to watch this one again and see if my mind has changed since.

Justin Hammer in Iron Man 2 (2010). I was glad to see Rockwell play the bad guy in an Iron Man movie, he is sort of the guy who fund the big bad guy in this one. He was a little over the top in this movie but so was everyone else, bad script.

Victor Mancini in Choke (2008). Another movie I liked and thought Rockwell did a good job in, but it has just been a while since I have seen it.

I am sure you have seen at least some of these roles and can appreciate Rockwell's fine comedic and dramatic acting. I look forward to seeing him continue to take on roles in movies that are not always the norm but almost always good.


le0pard13 said...

Oh, yes! Sam Rockwell continues to put down solid performances each and every time I've seen him in a film. Some great highlights you've given him, mummbles.

Wesley said...

Let's not forget his role alongside Ben Affleck and Alyssa Milano in Glory Daze!

Karl in The Sitter is my favorite though Moon is a close 2nd and I agree that film is underrated.

Katie Devine said...

Awesome. I am also a fan (as you know!) :) said...

Very underrated. Looking forward to checking out A Single Shot. It is available pre-release on Itunes but I have not had a chance to check it out yet.

Nostra said...

Great choices!