Gene Hackman in the '70s
Though retired from acting since the early 2000s, Gene Hackman remains a marquee draw for cinema fans. While this staying power testifies to the enduring appeal of his performances, Hackman's unique screen charisma was evident from the very start of his career, as demonstrated by Trylon Microcinema's retrospective, Gene Hackman in the '70s. Hackman's rise from character actor to leading man reflected a popular shift in cinema toward roles imbued with emotional nuance and moral ambiguity. Nowhere are these traits embodied with more intensity than in the part of "Popeye" Doyle, the grizzled NYC cop obsessed with breaking up an international heroin ring in the electrifying French Connection (1971). The sequel, French Connection II (1975) takes Hackman abroad in pursuit of the head of the nefarious operation. Shifting gears, the criminally underseen Scarecrow (1973) teams Hackman with Al Pacino, another celebrated actor of his era, for a soul-searching drama involving two vagabonds hitchhiking across the country, guided by modest dreams of opening a car wash. Rounding out the series, The Conversation (1974) gives Hackman one of his greatest roles as a surveillance expert who learns more than his conscience will allow. Embodying paranoia, the performance is yet another example of how Hackman's talent continues to define an era. (Pictured: French Connection)
Fridays, Saturdays, 7 & 9:15 p.m.; Sundays, 5 & 7:15 p.m. Starts: June 6. Continues through June 29, 2014
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