Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go on an overnight drunk, and in 10 days I’m going to set out to find the shark that ate my friend and destroy it. Anyone who wants to tag along is more than welcome.
– Steve Zissou – The Life Aquatic
Oh Bill Murray. Is there anything you do that isn’t brilliant? (For the record I choose to believe the Garfield movie doesn’t exist).
Seriously. I grew up with Bill on the big screen on a regular basis. I was a bit too young to catch his SNL stint, but by the time Ghostbusters came out, I was 6 and ready to see it. I can remember being terrified by the scene in the NY public library, laughing at slimer and Rick Moranis, and thinking Dick getting melted marshmallow dumped on him was the greatest thing ever. Of course it wasn’t until I was older that I was able to go back and watch Ghostbusters and truly appreciate the brilliance that went into making the film. Seriously, go back and just watch Bill. Every line is delivered perfectly. I highly doubt any actor could have pulled that role off as perfectly as he did.
Of course, as time went on, Bill’s star began to fade. By the 90s most of his films are forgettable, with maybe the exception of Groundhog Day and Rushmore. Speaking of Rushmore, I’d say that was when he rose like a phoenix out of the ashes of his career. Somehow Wes Anderson was able to reach back in time and yank the Bill Murray from 1984 and place him in the body of Bill Murray 1998. Since then, he’s had a string of brilliant films where he’s been able to showcase his ability to act, as well as his comedic skills. If you have any doubt about it, go watch Zombieland.
Now as strong as my appreciation for Bill is, IAM: fist_intheair definitely has me beat. Nikko Hurtado from Hesperia, CA. did this piece on him recently, and I was floored when I saw it.
Regardless of your current feelings towards Bill, you must have some fond memory of at least one of his performances. Was it his turn as Ernie McCracken in Kingpin? Or maybe you’re a bit older and prefer him in Meatballs (fun fact: I went to the camp across the lake from Camp White Pine outside Haliburton, ON, where Meatballs was filmed). Obviously fist_intheair prefers Steve Zissou, so what was/is your favorite Bill role?