Agatha : Hoffman's Acting Here . . .

Hoffman's Acting Here . . .

I've just been watching this film and my first observation is that Dustin I think Hoffman delivers a rather wooden performance in relation to Vanessa Redgrave's subtlety. Hoffman's acting is always a bit stiff to me yet it works beautifully on so many of the films he's done. Watching him here, I hear his voice from other performances, such as
in "Midnight Cowboy", in
particular. In relation to Redgrave, who plays a shy, delicate character here, he seems rather 2-dimensional through most of the film.
For me, the chemistry
between them is low but each
is such an outstanding actor
that their relationship still works at some level.
The difference in their
heights seems problematic
only because most of us are accustomed to expecting the
male partner of a hetero
couple to be at least as tall
as the female. Yet, we drop
those assumptions in
considering same-sex
partners, don't we? I'd never
truly thought about it from
that perspective . . .
Regardless, Hoffman delivers a decent if somewhat
awkward performance IMHO . . .

Re: Hoffman's Acting Here . . .

I agree about his acting. And for me, his height is not only problematic but it is ridiculous in the "kiss" scene outside her room. Redgrave looks completely baffled and Hoffman looks as if he was going to tumble if she hadn't held him. Terrible film. I believe the stories about Hoffman having the script re-written at his insistence is what made this film very boring and virtually unwatchable.

Re: Hoffman's Acting Here . . .

Interesting. I had a completely different reaction to his acting and the height difference. I found his acting to be as charismatic as usual, and felt he gave a very warm and empathetic performance here. Any "stiffness" to me seemed to be that of a fish out of water as he's playing a Yank in England trying very hard to impress the stand-offish people around him, as well as trying to coax a reluctant Christie into any kind of interaction.

As for the height difference, I found it to be charming and amusing and all part of their outward mismatch. I especially liked the comment in the swimming pool "Don't worry- if I can stand here, you certainly can!"

The kiss scene was pretty sweet and her towering over him took some of the sting out of the fact that he's essentially stalking the woman. I like the fact they dealt with it head on (pun not intended) and showed Redgrave bending, rather than having Hoffman stand on something and try to kid the viewers he's taller, Alan Ladd style. I like that honesty- it's pretty rare in films. But given some viewers' reactions, it's not surprising they lie.

Re: Hoffman's Acting Here . . .

Compelling argument. I am a fan of Alan Ladd and I see your point. I'll give it another shot. Thank you.