Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Dennis Hopper, the Easyrider and Rebel, who died recently

Dennis Hopper will always be remembered by my generation for his iconic performances in great 20th century movies such as Rebel Without a Cause, Giant, Easy Rider, Apocalypse Now, Blue Velvet, and in other successful movies in the 21st century. He, therefore, has a remarkable career in films going back to the 1950s. Posters of Hopper, as Billy, on a motorbike riding alongside Peter Fonda, as Wyatt, in Easy Rider, adorned many a student bedroom in the late 1960s and early 1970s.  Teenagers and folk in their twenties went to see the film many times, played the movie soundtrack on vinyl disks and cassette tapes, dressed in similar hippy clothing and used the Hopper/Fonda hippyspeak in everyday life.  As the years passed they rented the video, bought special editions and eventually obtained DVD versions.

Peter Fonda seemed laid back and cool, while Dennis Hopper seemed much more menacing and volatile.
Dennis Hopper went on to play violent men, psycho killers and disturbed characters, who arguably reflected something of the turbulence of his own life.  Sex, drink and drugs were an integral part of his lifestyle.  He was married five times and needed treatment for alcohol and drug related problems. DH had three children, two daughters and a son.

Dennis Hopper was famous for his art collection, estimated to be worth well over two million dollars, and his love of works of modern art.  This love for art and art history was greatly influenced and encouraged by Vincent Price, who had an academic education in art history having studied at the Courtauld Institute in Bloomsbury, London.  DH was a prolific painter, photographer, and sculptor, who exhibited his own work and items from his collection from time to time.  He felt comfortable in the landscapes of Arizona and New Mexico while working in Hollywood, California.  DH's final resting place was Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico, following a burial service on 3 June.


Robert said...

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Robert Wright

Johli Baptist said...

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I'll be contacting you soon to discuss collaboration etc.


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