“Yakuza” Starring Robert Mitchum

Rob Hunter at Film School Rejects presents 35 Things We Learned from Sydney Pollack’s The Yakuza Commentary.  I like the Yakuza and think it was ahead of its time as far as the subject matter.  Having a legend like Robert Mitchum as your star doesn’t hurt either.  Before you click over, here are three of my favorite comments…

He (Director Sydney Pollack) loved Brian Keith and describes him as a sadly underrated actor for most of his life.

(I 100% agree.  Growing up I just knew Brian Keith from the tv sitcom Family Affair where he played good old Uncle Bill.  It wasn’t until I became an adult and started seeing Keith in westerns and crime movies that I realized his talent.  – Craig)

He (Director Sydney Pollack) was concerned that American audiences “don’t really like to read subtitles,” and Warner Bros. was hoping he could avoid using them all together.

(I think that subtitles, so you can hear the natural dialogue, adds  depth to a film.  Would The Godfather or Godfather II lost something without them?  I think they would have.  – Craig)

“He was capable of a lot,” says Pollack about Mitchum, “but you had to push him.” He thinks the actor, who often referred to himself as “an actress,” didn’t consider himself to be all the good without being ridden hard. “He was a real mule. He would give you what you wanted, but you had to beat him.”

(Mitchum comes off as a tough guy in film and I think that was just a reflection of his true life persona.  I also think that he and guys like Bogart felt that acting wasn’t a manly profession, but it was their calling. – Craig)