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Saturday, June 07, 2008

Martin Clunes

Have any of you noticed what a sublime actor Martin Clunes is? Yes, he of Doc Martin and if you are old enough, of Men Behaving Badly. Apart from many other fine roles, he directed and starred in Staggered and appeared in Shakespeare In Love.
Did you know his cousin was the late actor, Jeremy Brett who portrayed Sherlock Holmes in the long running ITV show The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes? In 2002 he playfully played serial killer John George Haigh in A Is for Acid, but as far as I am concerned it is his performance in ITV's production of Goodbye Mr Chips made in 2002 which sets him apart as an actor of supreme skill.
I had always been a fan of the films of the novel by James Hilton and one of my favourites is the 1969 musical version with Peter O'Toole (which many critics hated!) But Martin's portrayal of Mr Chips borders on the genius I believe. Don't believe me? Look at what his eyes are doing when he receives the worst news of his life. Outstanding. Never before was I so drawn into a character's sadness.
We look at Martin and think we see a comedy actor but I believe he is far more than that. Look out for him in the future.

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