CATEGORIES Independent, Scene Stealers, Trailers and Clips, Features, Trailers and Clips, Cinematical
One of the most overlooked actors in the world of cinema is Thomas Jay Ryan, also known as Henry Fool. In Hal Hartley's world, he was a Fool by name, but only in the most dynamic and classic sense. Ryan served us one of the most dynamic and irresistible characters that quirky cinema has seen. He's an actor that oozes presence, and it's one of Hollywood's biggest oversights that this man can't get a big, and dramatically engaging break.
Writing about Henry Fool, I want to call it a masterpiece, and I don't use that phrase lightly. The film is wonderful, but it is more about the world that was created, and how Fool's adventures can morph from serious poetry and child rearing to spies, intrigue, and explosions (in Fay Grim). In Fool, Ryan even makes the simplicity and awkwardness of grammar seem intriguing, and below, you can watch him teach Simon Grim (James Urbaniak) the differences between there, their, and they're.
Yes, the scene taps into my writerly inclinations, but it's also a wonderful example of Ryan's skill -- taking such a simple notion and thought, and expressing it Just. So., punctuating thoughts with a simple tapping of the piano key, and deliberate pauses.