LEE MARVIN MOVIE QUOTES: THE EARLY YEARS

Marvin Movie Quotes
As many fans know by seeing his films and reading Lee Marvin: Point Blank, Marvin had a unique ability to make memorable lines of dialogue in a film eminently quotable. Even in the earliest stages of his career, his resonant voice and often sarcastic delivery made Marvin movie quotes stand out from the rest of the cast and even the basic premise of the film. Personal friends and associates noted the same thing when viewing his films.

Lee Marvin (“Meatball”) and Claude Akins (“Horrible”) in Edward Dymytrk’s The Caine Mutiny (1954).

Take for example his almost throw-away line in The Caine Mutiny uttered when he and fellow sailor Claude Akins are carrying some heavy equipment through a passageway on ship and want to clear the decks:

“Lady with a baby, coming through!”

Adolph Heckeroth, Marvin’s boss at Heckeroth’s Plumbing in Woodstock, had a son, Bill, who took over the company, and remembered the line (and his father’s former employee) so well, he said he repeated constantly at work whenever he needed to clear the area.

During a conversation with Marvin’s son, Christopher, another one of the great Marvin movie quotes came into play. I was helping him do some gardening when a weed seemed a little harder to remove than first thought. Automatically, we both uttered the same line his father said to one-armed Spencer Tracy when their two characters first met in Bad Day at a Black Rock:

Henchmen Ernest Borgnine and Lee Marvin watch as Spencer Tracy gets off the train and prepare to confront him in John Sturges’ Bad Day at a Black Rock (1955).

“You look like you could use a hand.”
The laughter and high-fives continued for some time after.

And then there’s his less than stellar film and performance in the all-star cast 3-D opus Gorilla at Large (1954). Marvin’s good friend from his Woodstock days, David Ballantine  told me with tongue planted firmly in cheek that he considered it Marvin’s greatest role. Ballantine told me that his friend’s role as Officer Shaunessey, charged with keeping an eye on the title character, remains his favorite because….well, you’ll have to read Lee Marvin Point Blank to find that out. In the mean time, there’s this memorable Marvin line of dialogue given the weighty dramatic delivery it deserves….

Lee Marvin utters his memorable line to Lee J. Cobb in Gorilla at Large (1954).

“They haven’t made a gorilla yet that can out smart, Shaunessey!”

Hey, any actor can do Shakespeare but let’s hear Olivier bellow out that beauty!
– Dwayne Epstein

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LEE MARVIN & THE “DOG DAY” OF SUMMER

The dog day of summer is undeniably upon us from coast to coast, with east of the Rockies taking the brunt of it all. We in California finally caught up with the rest of the country with some now record-breaking temperatures.
Yeah, I know, Dog Day should be plural, as in DOG DAYS, but that would disallow the subject of the blog: a segue to one of Lee Marvin’s last and strangest film: the weird French film named Dog Day (1984), or Canicule in France, its country of origin.

Lee Marvin as Jimmy Cobb in DOG DAY, looking classier than anything found in the movie.

It’s axiomatic that every good actor has some bad films in their canon and that no one ever sets out to make a bad film. Both axioms apply to this film. In researching Lee Marvin Point Blank, I was hard pressed to find any information on the film, let alone any one to interview about it. I did make a concerted effort to contact the only other American cast member, Tina Louise, but try as I might, she wouldn’t grant me an interview. Probably just as well as considering the film’s reception.

American co-stars Lee Marvin and Tina Louise in her only scene in France’s DOG DAY.

It was never released to U.S. theaters and went straight to the VHS shelf…in the $1.99 bargain bin, I might add.
What’s it about? Marvin is Jimmy Cobb, an aging American gangster on the run after a botched bank robbery in Paris. He holes up in a French farmhouse in which resides the weirdest group of people this side of the Addams family. Being a European production, the film’s sensibilities, compared to American films are, shall we say..slightly askew?

The European sensibilities of DOG DAY are on full display. When was the las time you saw a child (TIN DRUM’s David Bennent)  smoke a cigarette in an American film?

In all fairness, there are some noteworthy aspects to the film. A heart stopping car chase courtesy of legendary stunt driver Remy Julienne in the film’s opening is probably the best example. Marvin, of course looks the part as an aged American gangster nicknamed “Caponie” by annoying child actor David Bennent…And there’s also….no, that’s really about it. Other French film stars, such as Miou-Miou, Victor Lanoux, and Jean Carmet really don’t add much to this embarrassment. Of course, if you like your Eurotrash more on the trashy side than the Euro, then this might be right up your alley. I think this is best summed up in the anecdote Marvin recounted to the L.A. Times when the film was in production. Talk about an omen! Feel free to check it out below and in the mean time, stay cool. Curl up with the air conditioner and a good book…say, Oh, I don’t know….Lee Marvin Point Blank?
– Dwayne Epstein

Lee Marvin discusses DOG DAY, among other things.

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LEE MARVIN: POINT BLANK MAKES THE PERFECT FATHER’S DAY GIFT!

Still looking for the perfect, last-minute Father’s Day gift for this Sunday, June 17th? Well, look no further as LEE MARVIN: POINT BLANK  might be just the thing! For those who may have already purchased it, then you know all about it. A copy for any dad who’s a fan would fit the bill and if he’s not a fan, he jus may become one after reading it.
If you didn’t already know, it’s  the winner of the Bronze in Biography at the 2013 Independent Publisher Book Awards(IPPY), a finalist in Forewod Magazine’s Book of the Year contest, a NY Times & Wall Street Journal top ten best seller and, according to Time Magazine’s Stefan Kanfer, it’s “Unforgettable… a surprisingly intelligent and heroic figure springs from the page… Epstein looks at a complicated figure and presents him in a full-length, three-way mirror. And it is absolutely impossible to look away.”
Amazon’s website offers next day shipping AND gift wrapping! It’s available in three separate formats. First, as a collectible hardcover…..

My personal copy of the hardcover dust jacket forLee Marvin Point Blank (note the bronze medallion for winning the IPPY award), that is going to be quite collectible as it’s almost out of print!

Without the dust jacket, Lee Marvin Point Blank has this really impressive image engraved on it!

It’s also available in trade paperback with extra material added as shown in the starburst added for extra incentive….

Trade paperback cover of Lee Marvin Point Blank that’s identifiable by the Leonard Maltin quote and added star burst.

Lee Marvin Point Blank’s  paperback table of contents that delineates the exclusive extras.

If your father is fairly tech savvy, then you should know that Lee Marvin Point Blank is also available as an e-book in various incarnations. The most popular has proven to be Amazon’s Kindle. In fact, in June 2014, it made the NY Times bestseller list at number four! Pretty cool, huh? It’s described below as….

Screen shot of Amazon’s Kindle description of Lee Marvin Point Blank.

So, all that said, what are you waiting for? Reduced pricing, great extras, free shipping and gift wrapping, all add up to make Lee Marvin Point Blank the perfect Father’s Day gift. You’re welcome.
– Dwayne Epstein

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