I’ve been remiss in talking about notable celebrity deaths here in the blog recently. Among others I’ve neglected to mention were the great cinematographers Haskell Wexler and Vilmos Zsigmond. Death isn’t something I’ve wanted to dwell on lately. However, when an icon the stature of David Bowie passes, that demands attention.
Unfortunately, I am ill equipped to provide a proper tribute to Bowie’s legacy as a musical artist, and the ways he changed our perception of what a rock star was supposed to be. I’ll leave that to other sources. Our main focus in this blog has always been movies, and Bowie made a significant contribution in that area as well. His songs are featured in hundreds of movie soundtracks and he occasionally appeared as an actor.
Although his acting roles were infrequent, he generally made it a point to pick interesting projects. Some of his most notable performances include the disaffected alien in Nicolas Roeg’s sci-fi enigma ‘The Man Who Fell to Earth’, Catherine Deneuve’s vampire companion in ‘The Hunger’, the Goblin King in Jim Henson’s ‘Labyrinth’, Pontius Pilate in Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Last Temptation of Christ’, and eccentric scientist Nikola Tesla in Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Prestige’. He also had a memorable cameo in David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me’.
The following David Bowie movies are currently available on Blu-ray.
- ‘Absolute Beginners‘
- ‘The Hunger‘
- ‘The Last Temptation of Christ‘
- ‘The Man Who Fell to Earth‘
- ‘Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence‘
- ‘The Prestige‘
- ‘Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me‘
One title I’d still like to see on the format is ‘Basquiat’, Julian Schnabel’s bio-pic about artist Jean Michel Basquiat, in which Bowie played Andy Warhol.
David Bowie died on Sunday at the age of 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer. He’s survived by his second wife (the model Iman) and two children, one of which is film director Duncan Jones of ‘Moon’ and the upcoming ‘Warcraft’. Bowie’s final album, ‘Blackstar’, was released just two days before his death.