A Memorial Tribute to Val Kilmer

He's not dead... just underappreciated.

Aug 8, 2011 at 4:02pm | Leave a comment

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TCM is reprising their fantastic "Summer Under the Stars" series, where they celebrate the work of a different actor every day -- Bette Davis, Montgomery Clift, William Powell, and so on. It's the best thing in the world if you want to blow a whole thunderstormy day on some amazing cinema. Like the recent Brando tribute day, during which I had a crazy epiphany while trying to figure out who he reminds me of. The I realized!

ICE MAN.

Why have we been ignoring how awesome Val Kilmer is, like every day of our lives? His Brando-sity goes beyond the pouty lips and, er, dramatic off-camera look (Here's Val Kilmer at ComicCon last week. Now here he is dressed as Bacchus. Val Kilmer:  spirit animal).The "Island of Dr. Moreau" co-stars have a similar lovely, weirdo mystique and understated sense of humor.

THUS: I propose we honor some stars with film fests while they are not too dead to be honored by them. So please join me in feting the very much alive VK by giving him the first, innaugural "Summer Under the Stars: Alive Edition." Because as Val's great uncle, Joyce Kilmer* once wrote, I think that you shall never see/A poem as lovely as "The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans."

Here's what we're watching in our Kilm Kestival.

True Romance
I should not have to tell you to watch this film again. This is, as the title implies, one of the most romantic movies ever made. Val is Elvis. Valvis. Watch for Valvis.

Tombstone
Men of today, your silly mustaches are on notice. The mustache game in this movie is not for bike messengers and graphic designers! WHIP CRACK!

MacGruber
I cannot evangelize for this movie enough. It's really very funny. Come for Val as the villain, Dieter von Cunth (yep), stay for your girl, Kristen Wiig.

Heat
They really do not make action movies like this anymore. Pacino! De Niro. VAL. Eat ice cream while you watch and occasionally go, "HEAT!"

Wonderland
After Val was feared on the beach volleyball courts, he became extra scary as pornstar/mayyyyyybe murderer John Holmes in this film, which is notable for a really stellar, serious turn by Lisa Kudrow (yep).

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
This was such a nice little noir, and Val plays a gay detective who smooches RDJ. RDJ!

Did I forgot your favorite vilm? Lemme know. I'll be here, rewatching "Real Genius."

*indicates lie