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Dissecting Actor Ron Perlman

Jun. 25, 2013by: Ammon Gilbert
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Ron Perlman

Buy HELLBOY here!

There are a few character actors working in the genre that elicits such excitement whenever they appear on the big screen as the great Ron Perlman. Whether its seeing his massive cranium looking all hardcore or that booming voice of his ring out in a manly gruff, every time I see him on the big (or small) screen, I get a big dopey smile on my face. Plus, the guy just seems cool as f*ck. With PACIFIC RIM coming out in just a few weeks (and SONS OF ANARCHY returning in the fall), Id say were well overdue in taking a closer look at Perlmans career. Lets do this!

BEST WORK

Buy DRIVE here!

My first real memories of Perlman have to be when he was Beast alongside Linda Hamiltons Beauty in the epic TV series BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. I literally havent seen this show in 25 years or more, so it could be complete garbage, but I remember liking it well enough plus, it was one of those roles Perlman was born to play (at least, on a physical level). And while his acting career took off in the movies, the dude has stuck to appearing on TV series throughout his career, with tons of voice work in animated series from the ANIMANIACS to BATMAN: THE ANIMATED SERIES, with even a few gigs as voices in video games throughout the years. And now with the incredibly watchable SONS OF ANARCHY, it looks like this trend is going to continue from now into the future. Talk about a guy who knows how to keep busy!

On the movie side, the dudes done great things with SLEEPWALKERS, CITY OF LOST CHILDREN, DESPERATION, I SELL THE DEAD, and last years epic, DRIVE as a hardcore Mafioso who knows how to break a leg or two (all while sporting a polyester workout suite). He excels in the sword and sorcery genre, rocking out roles in OUTLANDER, SEASON OF THE WITCH, and CONAN THE BARBARIAN (the remake). And while those line-in mostly with just OK, I couldnt say any of them were truly awful. This leaves us with the area of film where Perlman truly shines: in collaboration with director Guillermo del Toro. He blew us away with CRONOS, he entertained us in BLADE 2, but where he really came into his own was in the other role Perlman was born to play: HELLBOY. Yup, HELLBOY and HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY are both knock-out movies, thus driving home that when del Toro and Perlman get together, good things happen (PACIFIC RIM, Im looking at you!).

WORST WORK

Buy THE SCORPION KING 3: REDEMPTION here!

With all this good, could it be Perlman has done bad? Yes so much yes, actually, but it doesnt matter, because with every bad there are a few more good, and lets face it regardless of the quality of movie hes in, Perlman is always awesome. But THE ISLAND OF DR. MOREAU, BUNRAKU, THE DEVILS TOMB, KILLER BY NATURE, and the highly anticipated MUTANT CHRONICLES are all bad movies. Every single one of them. And though he does well in the swords and sorcery genre, he has a few bad seeds under his belt as well mainly IN THE NAME OF THE KING: A DUNGEON SIEGE TALE and the horrendous (yet hilarious) franchise sequel, THE SCORPION KING 3: BATTLE FOR REDEMPTION. What a stinker that turned out to be!

The real atrocities that Perlman will never be able to live down are his roles in two duds in larger film franchises: ALIEN RESURRECTION and STAR TREK: NEMESIS. Both movies are horrendous, both will forever be looked down upon as the worst in each of their respective series, and you cant help but remember that Perlman is in both of them. That said, cant blame the guy for signing on for either of these flicks hed be crazy not to be in an ALIEN or STAR TREK movie!

TRADEMARKS

Buy HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY here!

Ron Perlman has a giant cranium. Lets just get that out of the way first and foremost because it really is his most distinctive feature. The dude has a big head and its that big head that has given him work over the years, and its one of the big reasons why hes so famous and recognizable. He also has a deep, booming, almost cartoonish voice that adds to his awesomeness, but has scored him a shitton of work over the years. Whats one of the coolest things about Perlman is his ability to play good guys and bad guys with easeseriously, the guy can pull off both sides of the sword and you believe it. Thats some serious skill right there.

HIDDEN GEM

Buy DARK COUNTRY here!

A few years back the great Thomas Jane wrote, directed, and starred in a little movie called DARK COUNTRY. It was mostly a stylized film-noir mystery about a dude, his girlfriend, and some freaky shit that happens to him while traveling a lonely road in the middle of the desert. Its mostly a Jane vehicle, and an entertaining one at that, but Perlman has a bit part as the evilish Highway Patrolman who stops to help Jane along the way. Perlmans not in it for that long, but goddamn does he pull off a great performanceand a memorable one. Im guessing most people havent seen this one, but its totally worth a look.

NEXT PROJECT

Buy JUSTICE LEAGUE: FLASHPOINT PARADOX here!

There is no lack of work for Perlman, and that is a great thing for all of us. Obviously, his biggest upcoming project is in this summers blockbuster extravaganza PACIFIC RIM, teaming up with director Guillermo del Toro and SONS OF ANARCHY co-star Charlie Hunnam. Shit looks dope, yo! Cant frickin wait for that one to blast onto the big screen. On the smaller screen, hes rockin a voice in the upcoming JUSTICE LEAGUE movie FLASHPOINT PARADOX, and on the even smaller screen is the next season of SONS, starting in the fall (which I absolutely cant f*ckin wait for). Dude has a few comedies and dramas coming out as well (including one called KID CANNABIS, which has classic written all over it), so least to say the era of Perlman is not far from over. Oh, and theres a rumored HELLBOY 3 on the horizon, but nothing is confirmed as of yet, so well just have to wait and see on that one.

OVERALL

Buy SEASON OF THE WITCH here!

There are tough guys, and then theres Ron Perlman. From superheroes (HELLBOY) to swords and sorcery (SEASON OF THE WITCH and OUTLANDER) to gangster flicks (DRIVE) and thrillers (DARK COUNTRY), the guy has his finger in just about everythingeven TV (SONS OF ANARCHY) and animation (FLASHPOINT PARADOX). Ive been a fan of his since BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, and while he doesnt have a flawless filmography, he gives his all in everything he touches so much so that hes the only watchable thing in ALIEN RESURRECTION and even though he slept walked through SCORPION KING 3, he sure added to films overall entertainment. I love me some Ron Perlman and I cant wait to see him on the big screen again in del Toros PACIFIC RIM its gonna be epic!

Extra Tidbit: What is your favorite Ron Perlman movie (or TV show)?

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3:14PM on 06/25/2013

Ron is awesome

This article, however, desperately needed a proof-read.
This article, however, desperately needed a proof-read.
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2:47PM on 06/25/2013
The guy has been in way more movies than Kevin Bacon I would imagine. He sure as hell keeps busy, but even in shitty movies he knows how to polish up a turd with presence alone. While he was born to play Hellboy, his Clay Morrow persona, on SoA, is brilliant.
The guy has been in way more movies than Kevin Bacon I would imagine. He sure as hell keeps busy, but even in shitty movies he knows how to polish up a turd with presence alone. While he was born to play Hellboy, his Clay Morrow persona, on SoA, is brilliant.
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1:02PM on 06/25/2013
i probably like some of us grew up watch Beauty And The Beast as a kid in the 80s but my film and role that's he's done is totally Hellboy
i probably like some of us grew up watch Beauty And The Beast as a kid in the 80s but my film and role that's he's done is totally Hellboy
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10:53AM on 06/25/2013
A very versatile actor indeed! Love him best in Hellboy. However, try catching him in The Last Supper with Cameron Diaz. It might be hard to find now but Perlman practically steals the show.
A very versatile actor indeed! Love him best in Hellboy. However, try catching him in The Last Supper with Cameron Diaz. It might be hard to find now but Perlman practically steals the show.
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