Monday, February 3, 2014

Losing a Master Actor - Philip Seymour Hoffman

Notable personalities pass away every day, in fact, several passed away just in the past week. You take a moment to pause and reflect on their achievements in life that affected you politically or socially, and move on. When a celebrity dies, the reflection process is slightly different because most of us come to rely upon celebrities as our direct and reliable route to escapism, our own way to deal with life. The sadness is compounded even more when you really liked and enjoyed the work of a particular celebrity, and that’s why the sudden and shocking death of Philip Seymour Hoffman was like a kick in the gut. I was doing some research on the internet around 1pm on Sunday, and I went to check out my Twitter timeline feed to see what was up. Low and behold, I saw the shocking tweet headline declaring Hoffman dead in NYC. I could not believe it! I let out a very loud, “OMG, Jesus Christ”! And I frantically scrolled down my twitter feed to see if this was not a hoax or some terrible error. At that very moment, the news hadn’t spread just yet, but up popped several more tweets from favorite bloggers I follow, and they had the same ‘OMG’ ‘Jesus Christ’ ‘Dear God’ expressions that I had. That’s when I knew it was true.

Shortly afterwards, more reputable tweets came up linking the news to New York City media outlets and police comments confirming the horrible news. The majority of celebrity sudden deaths do make me sad, especially if they are young. But when I like the person and their talent was exceptional, their death just hits my heartstrings and leaves me depressed. As a person who enjoys watching great films and enjoys the great performances of prestigious actors/actresses, I am fond of quite a few. Although Philip Seymour Hoffman was not an actor I thought about daily, nor blogged about, he was someone who commanded my respect because the man was just a phenomenal actor. He never gave a poor performance. And even though I preferred the other Capote film that was released around the same time his Oscar winning Capote performance came out, I still greatly admired the man and felt that he was going to be one of those actors who will be around for another 30-40 years and earn at least two more Oscars. My favorite performance of Philip’s was in 2012, ‘The Master’, with Joaquin Phoenix. A movie not truly appreciated by critics and snubbed by the Oscars (nominated but won nothing), but something tells me they will all look back at this film with different eyes due to Philip’s passing.

Sadly, it appears that Philip’s life was cut short by a long rumored battle with drug addiction. To not sully the man’s reputation, I see no need to comment about the unsavory aspects that lead to his death, but with that said; we should not demonize a fellow human being who was haunted by drug addiction. It’s sad that he could not find complete joy in the successes of his famous life, his brilliant talent, and his three lovely children who have now had their young father taken away from them far too soon. In this social MEEEEEdia society we live in, there are countless, talentless celebutards whose images are forced fed into our faces almost 24/7. I have no use for 90% of the most popular celebrities because they offer me absolutely nothing in return – they are cheap entertainment for the lowest common denominator. However there are some truly talented entertainers who are a marvel to watch bring characters alive and make stories interesting to watch, and Philip Seymour Hoffman was one of those special entertainers. He left us far too soon due to his private suffering, and left us with a wasteland of 24/7 MEEEEEdia morons who deliberately and desperately toe the line with questionable public misbehavior so that we can notice them and talk about them, by any means necessary. Rest in peace Philip.

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