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I'm a big fan of Jack Lemmon's dramatic roles but not this one. The movie is about Lemmon and his estranged son played by Robby Benson, who has a deep hatred for his father. After learning Lemmon is dying, Benson tries to make thing right with his father. 125 minutes of Benson talking about how bad of a father Lemmon was, combined with Lemmon's corny jokes, does not not equal a good movie
I saw Tribute back when it first came out and i found it to be a great movie for me. I was only 22 then, but all my friends told me that i was very much like Scottie Templeton. He was so outgoing and wanted everyone to like him almost too much. But as the movie went on it became sadly obvious that he forgot to get his priorities straight. His family. Now that i am almost 50 (his age), i also have a son who is so much different to me. Just like Judd (Robbie Benson) in the movie. I can relate to both of their roles now even more as my son is very much like Judd. The thing that i got out of this movie was that i was able to make my son my first priority, no matter how different he may be to me. My favourite line was when Jack Lemmon was told in a nice way that "he treats everyone the same, no matter if you are a hooker or family'....that was it for me. Thanks Mr Lemmon and Mr. Benson for letting me better understand who i am today!!
"Tribute" is a wonderful tear-jerker about a father and his estranged son.
Benson is good, though his character may be a bit over-the-top cynical.
as usual, Jack Lemmon provides a textbook example of acting without
like he's acting, the mark of a great performer.
A beautiful film. Mind you it's a simple film, but a beautiful one and it introduces us to some of Jack Lemmon's best work. By this time, Lemmon was a Hollywood legend. He'd been playing young romantic leads and comic goofs, now was time when he truly started challenging himself and his craft. His Oscar nomination, I would imagine came about because of the end of the film. As Scottie Tempelton slowly walks onto the stage, after a battle with sickness and possible death, he looks on into the audience to find his son and it's one of the most touching moments I have ever experienced. When he yells his son's name and he says that wonderful line "Give me a kiss...right here!" And taps his cheek slowly. As the son goes in to kiss his cheek, Scottie quickly turns and it becomes a kiss on the lips. The moment is so lovely that it's hard to put into words the feelings I have. It was a very special moment for me. Lemmon's performance in this film is very special to me.
I am bias though because He is my uncle Andy!! I loved him and miss him
much these days since his passing. He was a great Actor and loved his
craft.He was just starting to get noticed when he died. He did a lot
for Canadian Television. My Uncle Andy worked with some great Classic
Actors like David Niven. He told me once that Acting was one of the
greatest freeing of the soul. and that it gave him great joy! He also
had a great love for the theater. He said that true actors never want
to be a star they just want to be part of the process. A good actor is
a en-sable actor. Its the group that make the greats.
Jack Lemmon recreates his Tony-nominated stage role playing a Broadway press agent who has always shied away from adult responsibilities, treating everyone--from doormen to movie stars--like the life of the party. This devil-may-care approach to living has naturally alienated Lemmon's tightly-wound son, a begrudging twenty-year-old who doesn't share his father's sense of humor. Bernard Slade adapted his play for the screen, and he's positively shameless while decorating the narrative with pure-hearted friends and doctors, a gold-plated prostitute (who receives her own tribute from a lifetime of johns at Joe Allen!), an adoring ex-wife, and Kim Cattrall as a frisky young thing who flits from father to son as if she's in the running for the prostitute's job. None of this makes much emotional or logical sense--and little of it amounts to anything substantial by the end--although Lemmon's manic, zinger-filled performance gooses the movie and brings it to a near-boil. As the embittered son, Robby Benson tries hard to bring off a dim role; his occasional success here is miraculous considering Slade never gives him a strong line of dialogue. Lemmon is reunited with his "Days of Wine and Roses" co-star Lee Remick, and they have a built-in rapport that is wonderful to see...however Jack is really the whole picture. Slade has manufactured the proceedings to slant completely in the star's favor, showing off his sass and pathos, and as a one-man vehicle for the talented actor it obviously has some worth. **1/2 from ****
A shallow Broadway press agent (Jack Lemmon) discovers he's dying. At
the same time his ex-wife (Lee Remick) and their kid (Robby Benson)
visit. They all try to come to terms with his impending death and bond.
Sounds pretty terrible doesn't it? The script is annoyingly predictable, it goes on far too long and Benson is just horrible but this is still worth catching just for Lemmon. I've heard he did this on stage beforehand so he knew the character and plays it to perfection. He's just great from beginning to end. He was justly nominated for an Academy Award for this. Remick isn't in this much but she does wonders with a clichéd character. Also the wonderful Colleen Dewhurst was sadly underused as Lemmon's doctor. Still for Lemmon's performance alone this is worth catching. It looses points because of the predictable script and Benson's truly horrible performance.
I saw the Broadway play starring Jack Lemmon, and it was very memorable. I saw this film version of it shortly after, and it was awful! Fortunately this movie went away and no one seems to want to view it anymore, and good for that. May it rest in peace.
Jack Lemmon played the part of Scottie Templeton in 1978 on Broadway
for 212 performances. I was lucky to be there and be part of a
remarkable performance. The audience was actually part of the tribute
as guests and I think maybe some of that was lost in the film. All were
in tears at the end and became friends of Lemmon. I also think some of
the "Broadway" acting transferred to the screen and may have made it
look robotic. I enjoyed the film but it may have been because I was I
was a part of that private party years earlier. There were many
surprises in the play that were lost in the film. There were 2
memorable moments for me. As I was sitting in the 3rd row, Lemmon
recognized his nurse's voice as a former stripper, and verified it when
she ripped open her uniform to reveal her memorable breasts. I often
use the line "You say potato and I say potato" (no difference in the
pronunciation) which Lemmon delivered hilariously.
"Tribute" stunk to high hell. Jack Lemmon is capable of brilliant work but he can be lousy when he goes too far over the top with slapstick humor (loved that chicken suit, Jack) and I defy anyone who doesn't need serious help to watch the last scene without groaning audibly and reaching for a barf bag. This continually annoying and exasperating ode to putrid schmaltz contained all the phony, forced emotions that the likes of Aaron Spelling made famous with such horrible TV shows as "Loveboat." In addition, the actor who played Lemmon's son was such a vile little creep that we actually hoped someone would run him over, yet we were supposed to care that his dad never gave him enough personal attention. By the way, was the girl who gave this jerk a tumble just a tad too sugary and sunny for words and are we seriously supposed to believe that she would stick around for dose after dose of his whiny nonsense? How's about the whore with a heart of gold? Do you know of any prostitutes who get thrown surprise parties hosted by all their satisfied johns? How frigging ridiculous. And was that woman doctor a total pain, or what? At the conclusion, when Lemmon smooched his "son" full on the mouth and then dropped his pants, the reaction shots (especially hers) were just plain sick. This one was a real stinkeroo, a 'tribute' to phony emotions, bad acting, and a rotten script. Don't bother unless you need an emetic.
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