Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Don't Act Your Age

"Stop stooping", says Ailz. "You're getting an old person's hump."

"People have been saying that to me all my life," I say.

"But now it's for real," she says.

So I pull my shoulders back, raise my chin. And it works. If you stand like a young person you feel like a young person.

As it happens I've been reading how De Niro and the other old boys got special coaching on how to hold themselves like young men for the scenes in The Irishmen where they play their characters' younger selves. You'd think the body would know how to do that- but, no, apparently it has to relearn.

And it made me think about the magical scene in Once Upon a Time in the West where Henry Fonda de-ages himself for a thirty year flashback. Yes, there's some makeup involved but mainly he does it by the way he walks. Out he comes with a young man's snappy, purposeful stride and just in that moment the role he's playing doesn't matter because he's no longer the middle-aged Henry Fonda whose next iconic role will be as the curmudgeonly dad in On Golden Pond but the young Henry Fonda who is Tom Joad and Wyatt Earp.
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