Remembering Bob Hoskins – The RIGHT Way!

Seriously, can we all please get over that awful movie already and celebrate his good stuff?

Bob Hoskins has died from complications of pneumonia. He was 71.

His was a movie career that spanned four decades; one of the great British actors of our time. He had a string of fantastic movies under his belt – from The Long Good Friday with the (still) ridiculously hot Helen Mirren, to Who Framed Roger Rabbit? aside a menagerie of animated characters and the dark Mona Lisa, as well as more recent successes like Made In Dagenham, Bob Hoskins had a long and varied career, covering a variety of roles, themes and topics.

So how did gaming websites treat this news? Why, we brought up Super Mario Bros. – that 1993 turkey of a film loosely based on the Mario franchise.

In a sense, the response of many commenters was enough to lift the mood as lots of people seemed to agree with my gut reaction; is it really the time to bring up that movie? It wasn’t a good movie, no, but every actor has a dud or two in their repertoire, and when your career spans four consecutive decades, there will always be one or two movies you’ll live to regret; such is life, a life without a couple of regrets in my mind is a life not lived very well. On his death, is it necessary to once again dredge this piece up?

Personally, I find myself wanting to celebrate his good work; call me old-fashioned, but I do prefer on the death of a famous person to look at the good they brought to the world, and whatever they did that was right. Death to me is a time for mourning; but also a time to reflect, and to celebrate a life well lived. And Bob Hoskins certainly had quite the professional life to talk of – he was nominated for an Oscar for his role in Mona Lisa, and won a Golden Globe for it too. He was great in Mrs. Henderson Presents – and let’s not forget his role in Mermaids, alongside a relatively not-cosmetically-enhanced Cher and a young Winona Ryder. That’s before we get to his TV work, such as The Good Pope and The Wind In The Willows. Some may even remember him more for his bad-guy role in Unleashed, too. It’s quite the career, that’s for sure.

Of course, as I mentioned, to me Bob Hoskins will always and forever be P.I. Eddie Valiant in the absolutely brilliant Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, a movie that simply feels timeless, a wonderful bridge between a childish need for cartoon brightness and the pains of growing up, it served as a bridge in my adolescence, connecting two different stages of my life. Eddie was a great character, with a wonderful story arc, and where it would have been so easy for Bob Hoskins to end up second-fiddle to the “Toons”, he is absolutely there in the front, commanding a performance that lesser actors would have run a mile from (and many lesser actors in the future could never top, when paired up with cartoon sidekicks). Talk of a “remake” of this movie makes me sad; it doesn’t need remaking. Is it not possible to tidy it up and re-release it? The movie is a classic, and I’m of the mind some classics shouldn’t be so wilfully tampered with.

The irony is that as a gamer, the first movie that popped into my head WAS Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, not Super Mario Bros. – it’s not that I’d airbrushed it out of my memory, far from it. It just didn’t seem relevant to the discussion of an actor who had just died. Call me strange, but I prefer – and therefore will – remember the man as a true giant of the silver screen. I would wish to thank him for the many films he has made that I have seen. To me, that seems the dignified approach to take – respect for the fallen, in a sense.

There’s been no need to dredge that stupid movie up again. You’d think the Mario movie would have been front and centre in my head – but for myself and many others, it wasn’t. And it doesn’t need to be. This is a time to reflect on a man and his filmography; a long and rich tapestry worth remembering for the most part. To celebrate his work, and mourn a loss.

Let the Mario movie go. Worse game movies have followed since; do we really need to discuss Alone In The Dark? Or that awful Tekken movie? Or that silly Street Fighter one (and I don’t mean that 90’s one either!)? Or the horrendous Silent Hill: Revelations in 3D? The Mario movie may have been a very early example of the perils and pitfalls of bringing a games franchise to the big screen, but it pales in comparison to more modern entrants. It’s not great, but it’s not offensive; it’s silly, cheesy, trashy stuff. Not worth going out of your way to see, but hardly the worst use of a couple of free hours.

It’s probably time we let this one go. Twenty-one years have passed. And Bob Hoskins certainly did much more sterling work elsewhere.

Celebrate the good; let’s bury the bad. I mean, if you want to talk about a bad film he was in, how about we bring up Spice World?

And then hit it over the head with a shovel and never speak of it again.

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2 Responses to “Remembering Bob Hoskins – The RIGHT Way!”

  1. dap005 says:

    His work in roger rabbit was astounding and funny. People should at least be respectful to that fact then making fun of the fact that he starred in a bad movie (which in all seriousness turned out to be entertaining because it was so bad, either way hoskin did his job as an entertainer/actor).

    I hope all the best for his family and friends.There won't be another bob hoskin but an actor's performance will forever live on.

    • KamiOnGames says:

      As I said, most actors with a career of that length will have a few duds in their repertoire.

      Bob Hoskins is irreplaceable. And I, for one, mourn his passing. A great actor. I just don't get the need to bring up Mario – even if he himself once noted he regretted being in it (although as I said, I'd have been more ashamed about Spice World than anything…).

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