For someone who thought himself to be bad at acting, Josh Brolin has undoubtedly come a very long way. The actor, who once declared to have cried at the premiere of his second movie as he thought he was “so bad that I either have to stop this and do something else, or learn what I’m doing”, can put his mind at ease: more than thirty movies and thirty-two years in the industry down the road, the American actor has in fact proven not only to himself, but to the rest of the world that he is deserving of his place among Hollywood’s best. With only a few days to go before Only The Brave is released in UK cinemas, we take a look at some of Josh Brolin’s most iconic roles.
Josh Brolin’s first role and big break into the movie industry came in 1985 with The Goonies, where he played Brandon “Brand” Walsh. The story originally penned by Steven Spielberg follows the adventures of a group of children as they get together one last time before they are forced to move out of their neighbourhood, giving space to an expanding golf club. In a quest to stop that from happening The Goonies (as the group of friends refer to themselves), are determined to find a pirate’s treasure that an old map they have found supposedly leads to. Different in tone compared to most of the movies Josh Brolin then proceeded to star in, the actor’s big break is surely iconic: The Goonies is now considered a cult classic.
NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN
According to many critics and cinemagoers alike, Brolin’s performance in 2007’s No Country For Old Men is considered one of his best. The movie has very little dialogue in it, yet it never feels like an element is missing: the whole cast, and Brolin specifically, are so good at conveying their characters’ thoughts and feelings with their expressions that words are not needed, which alone is a testament to the stellar acting skills of Brolin and the rest of his cast mates. The movie was the actor’s first collaboration with the Coen Brothers, who took him on board again nine years later for Hail, Caesar!.
Definitely a harder test for the actor because of the nature of his role. In W. Josh Brolin plays a controversial character: George W. Bush, newly elected 43rd President of the United States of America when 9/11 happened, and promoter of the war in Afghanistan and Iraq. The actor was chosen for the role not long before filming started, so he had to cram as much research as possible into a very short amount of time. Determined to play the part accurately he watched countless videos of the American President in order to get even minor details like his walk right. According to how positively his portrayal was received, Brolin undoubtedly succeeded in his mission in translating the politician’s persona to the big screen.
Released in the same year as W., the movie Milk boasts another great performance from Josh Brolin playing yet another real life character: Dan White, one of the politicians that sat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors back in the 1970s. The movie follows Harvey Milk’s last years as he moves to the North Californian city and becomes an advocate for gay rights, finding a rival in Brolin’s character, who eventually shoots him and the mayor of San Francisco to death after yet another opposition to his political propositions. The rumours of an Oscar nomination for Brolin’s performance as a supporting actor did not become reality, the actor did however win the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male in a Supporting Role.
Earlier this year it was announced that Josh Brolin had been cast in Deadpool 2 as leading comic figure, Cable. Filming for the movie has ended only recently and is scheduled for release next summer – Brolin’s role in the film based on the Marvel Comics of the same name is certain to become iconic and a milestone in the actor’s career. Even the concept of sharing scenes with co-star Ryan Reynolds was enough to send fans of the superhero into a frenzy when the first look images were released! No stranger to playing the role of the bad guy, Brolin will undoubtedly be very convincing in Cable’s shoes.
ONLY THE BRAVE
Before gracing the big screen in that role next year however, Josh Brolin will appear in a completely contrasting film with Only The Brave, a movie based on tragic real events that reflect climate issues prevalent today. Reconstructing the events of the Yarnell Hill Fire, that brought the death of nineteen extremely skilled firemen in 2013, as they were trying to contain the wildfire that ended up destroying more than 300 acres of land in Arizona. Brolin plays team leader Eric Marsh, the Superintendent of the Granite Mountain Hotshots: he shines in a heart-wrenching performance that showcases both the heroism and the humanity of people like Marsh, who risk their lives in the line of duty to save others. He worked closely with the families of those effected by the tragedy to bring an authentic performance to the screen, alongside Miles Teller, Jennifer Connolly, Jeff Bridges and Taylor Kitsch.
Only The Brave is in UK cinemas on Friday 10th of November.