Friday, December 22, 2006

And Also Starring...

David Keith (L) in The Lords of Discipline

I remember a brief time when David Keith was the hottest young actor on the planet. We are talking here about 1980 or so, and Keith had gotten a few good notices for roles in The Rose, and as a nasty redneck in The Great Santini.

The one that really made folks take notice, however, was the prison drama Brubaker. Keith plays a small-time car thief who develops a relationship with Robert Redford's reformer warden, and he more than holds his own in their scenes together. He followed that up with a supporting role as a young sailor in the Sally Field/Tommy Lee Jones comedy Back Roads.

The big one was next up - An Officer and a Gentleman. Keith plays Richard Gere's best bud, the doomed Okie Sid Worley. In going back and looking at this film again, Worley is the one character who seems like a real, albeit flawed human to me. AOAAG was a huge hit, of course, and his performance propelled Keith into starring roles, where he had little success. Independence Day and The Lords of Discipline were both box office failures, and although Firestarter did moderately well, it was more due to young Drew Barrymore than to Keith.

Other Keith films of note: Heartbreak Hotel (as Elvis!), The Two Jakes, and Men of Honour.

No comments: