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1.10.14 0930
The W - Movies & TV - Phillip Seymour Hoffman Dead At 46
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BigDaddyLoco
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Since: 2.1.02

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.82
Whoa. He was really pretty great. So, many good roles, and yet it will always probably feel unfinished http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/02/03/movies/philip-seymour-hoffman-actor-dies-at-46.html?referrer=
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Kevintripod
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Since: 11.5.03
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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.98
Just stunned when I heard this.

Very sad.







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Pepperoni
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Since: 10.10.02
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.28
I really enjoyed his acting. Definitely one of the best in my lifetime. A sad end to a great talent.
Leroy
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Since: 7.2.02

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#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.68



He's in some of my favorite films. And I agree... it felt like his best work was still yet to come. Very sad...
AWArulz
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Since: 28.1.02
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#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.28
I enjoyed Hoffman's work and I am sorry for his lady and their kids. No one should die that young and no one should have their father taken from them so young.

I wonder why it is that many great artists, like Hoffman, and I am sure we can name many others, possibly at genius level, at least in their work - turn to addition - and go so early. Hendrix, Bon Scott, Joplin, Amy Winehouse, as well as not a few wrestlers come to mind. I think that, ultimately, you can add others, like say, Kurt Cobain to that list.

Maybe for some of you, this is too soon. But I have heard over the last day that "addiction is a disease." I'm not sure I agree with that. I just wonder why it seems such a strong pull for the famous.



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That the universe was formed by a fortuitous concourse of atoms, I will no more believe than that the accidental jumbling of the alphabet would fall into a most ingenious treatise of philosophy - Swift

Amos Cochran
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Since: 28.8.09

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.92
Addiction absolutely is a disease of the mind. When afflicted with it you fight it every day. And self-destructive behaviour like addiction can be ingrained into your psyche from the earliest days of your life.

As a celebrity you get untold scrutiny put upon you, and with it untold pressure. Everyone, famous and non-famous alike, handles pressure in different ways. Some thrive on it; others are destroyed by it. When you're fighting a battle with yourself about how you perceive your own life - that you're a failure, that you're messing things up for those around you, and so on - that kind of external pressure would just amplify everything. It absolutely is a tragedy to see someone like PSH succumb to those demons, as there but for the grace of God goes any human being on the planet. Polio or child abuse or neglect or any kind of childhood trauma or just a plan ol' chemical imbalance in the brain. These aren't exceptional circumstances. Some people can live with them. Some people lose that fight.

Rest in peace, one of the best character actors in history.
TheBucsFan
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Since: 2.1.02

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#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.69
I just wish we as a culture would be more consistent in how we discuss people who are addicted to drugs. Today, there is nothing but praise for this man, despite it becoming obvious that he's been a massive drug addict for a long time. Compare that to, say, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who has been a running joke for the past six months because of his crack use. You might say Ford brings it on himself because of his comical reaction to being caught, but then, how often did reporters shove their microphones in Hoffman's face asking him about his addictions? When was the last time Jon Stewart kicked off the Daily Show every day for a week making fun of him?

And of course Ford is just an obvious contemporary example. Hoffman had three kids, the oldest of them 10 years old, according to Wikipedia - Google turns up plenty of examples of parents having custody of their children taken away because of their drug abuse, so where is the outrage that this man was raising three kids?

I don't know what the answer is, but the way we just dismiss serious drug use because, hey, he made some great movies, seems quite problematic to me. It sends a terrible message to young people and to aspiring actors, and it makes it more baffling when we throw the book at people for the same behavior simply because they didn't make some great movies. Where's the justice in this? What do you tell the Texas parents whose 2-year-old kid was murdered in a foster home after they lost custody because they got caught smoking a joint?

This guy was in some movies I really like. But today, the headline should about be his drug abuse. It may not make him a bad person, I personally don't think it does, but then drug abuse doesn't automatically make anyone else a bad person either.
dwaters
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Since: 16.10.02
From: Connecticut

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.83
You make some good points here.

The guys who robs convenience stores is a junkie, yet actors or celebrities are "troubled" and "have demons".

Not sure how to change that.
Big Bad
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Since: 4.1.02
From: Dorchester, Ontario

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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.72
Rob Ford is a joke for a hundred reasons besides his drug abuse. Ford is an elected official who is terrible at his job; Hoffman was great at his job and thus has endlessly more respect. That said, your point isn't wrong, drug use doesn't automatically make one a bad person.

If I had to pick a favourite Hoffman performance, I'd go with 'The Master,' though that could just be because it's so fresh in my mind. Hoffman was such a great actor that you could list 15-20 performances as your favourite and all would be totally justified.

(edited by Big Bad on 3.2.14 2153)


"It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
Amos Cochran
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Since: 28.8.09

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#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.92
    Originally posted by TheBucsFan
    I just wish we as a culture would be more consistent in how we discuss people who are addicted to drugs. Today, there is nothing but praise for this man, despite it becoming obvious that he's been a massive drug addict for a long time. Compare that to, say, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who has been a running joke for the past six months because of his crack use. You might say Ford brings it on himself because of his comical reaction to being caught, but then, how often did reporters shove their microphones in Hoffman's face asking him about his addictions? When was the last time Jon Stewart kicked off the Daily Show every day for a week making fun of him?


Was Hoffman an elected official, being paid from the public purse? Did he invite people into his private life? Or did he just struggle with his demons behind closed doors like so many people do?

There absolutely is a disparity between how celebrity addicts and non-celebrity addicts are treated. The answer isn't to spend the day following a famous actor's death hectoring about drug abuse. The answer is to extend that support to everyone who falls into the self-inflicted cycle of self-abuse, regardless of their station in life.

And he wasn't "raising three kids" whilst on drugs. He had been clean for 23 years before falling off the wagon around six months ago when he split from his partner. He spent time with his kids, just like many, many other addicts fighting their addiction do.
TheBucsFan
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#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.67
    Originally posted by Amos Cochran
      Originally posted by TheBucsFan
      I just wish we as a culture would be more consistent in how we discuss people who are addicted to drugs. Today, there is nothing but praise for this man, despite it becoming obvious that he's been a massive drug addict for a long time. Compare that to, say, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, who has been a running joke for the past six months because of his crack use. You might say Ford brings it on himself because of his comical reaction to being caught, but then, how often did reporters shove their microphones in Hoffman's face asking him about his addictions? When was the last time Jon Stewart kicked off the Daily Show every day for a week making fun of him?


    Was Hoffman an elected official, being paid from the public purse? Did he invite people into his private life? Or did he just struggle with his demons behind closed doors like so many people do?

    There absolutely is a disparity between how celebrity addicts and non-celebrity addicts are treated. The answer isn't to spend the day following a famous actor's death hectoring about drug abuse. The answer is to extend that support to everyone who falls into the self-inflicted cycle of self-abuse, regardless of their station in life.

    And he wasn't "raising three kids" whilst on drugs. He had been clean for 23 years before falling off the wagon around six months ago when he split from his partner. He spent time with his kids, just like many, many other addicts fighting their addiction do.


So ... you want to nitpick my Rob Ford comment, but then you basically agree with me. What is your argument then? Was Charlie Sheen a public official when the US couldn't get enough of making fun of him, of mocking him for his addiction? Of course not. Who's to say Hoffman wouldn't have been just as ridiculous if people kept sticking microphones in his face and saying, "hey Phil, say something stupid, you silly drug addict?" You can believe Ford was treated that way because he was mayor of Toronto if you want, but I think you are being näive. Could you have named the mayor of Toronto before Ford was outed as a crack smoker?

For Sheen, Ford, and countless others, addiction is something to be mocked over, it's something the rest of society can be smug about. For Hoffman, suddenly it's a demon, something to elicit sympathy.

Your last line about spending time with his kids is totally missing the point - the truth is, many people who are found out as addicts are not ALLOWED to spend time with their kids. That story about the couple whose 2 year old was murdered by his foster parents after they lost custody because they were caught smoking a joint actually happened, I didn't just make that up. I don't know enough about Hoffman's personal life to comment on your claim that he didn't have custody of his kids when he relapsed, but according to this Washington Post piece, he entered a drug rehab program sometime after relapsing in 2012, which doesn't fit with your timeline.

What is the difference between Hoffman and all these other people? As far as I can see, it's that he was a critically acclaimed dramatic actor (a category which certainly excludes Sheen) while the others aren't. I already said my point wasn't to demonize Hoffman, but rather, when can we have this discussion about this double standard if not when it is most obviously on display?

The question was raised in this thread if addiction is actually a disease. The answer, apparently, is that it's only a disease when the person doing the judging has a favorable opinion of the person struggling with the addiction.

(edited by TheBucsFan on 4.2.14 0705)
Amos Cochran
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Since: 28.8.09

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#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.92
    Originally posted by TheBucsFan
    Your last line about spending time with his kids is totally missing the point - the truth is, many people who are found out as addicts are not ALLOWED to spend time with their kids. That story about the couple whose 2 year old was murdered by his foster parents after they lost custody because they were caught smoking a joint actually happened, I didn't just make that up.


Hoffman hadn't been FOUND OUT as an addict until his death. No arrests, no public acknowledgement of his use. And even then, we're arguing from the same point. Every life lost to addiction is shithouse. I'm just saying it's not about placing someone like PSH under the limelight of "why is it okay to canonize this guy", it's about looking at the other cases and saying "addiction is a disease and everyone who suffers from it deserves empathy".


    The question was raised in this thread if addiction is actually a disease. The answer, apparently, is that it's only a disease when the person doing the judging has a favorable opinion of the person struggling with the addiction.


I sincerely hope this wasn't aimed at me, as you will never find me saying "eh, he was a junkie, fuck him" about anyone who dies in these circumstances, famous or not. Although yeah, I do have a smidge more sympathy for those who struggle with this shit in private rather than those who wear it like a badge of honor. That's kind of human nature.

(edited by Amos Cochran on 4.2.14 0613)
AWArulz
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Since: 28.1.02
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#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 5.28
So I appreciate both sides that have been raised, and, as I said, I respect and admire the work Hoffman did, as I did the work of the other artists I named. Even Sheen, while certainly not an acclaimed dramatic actor, has done a lot of stuff I liked a lot.

The raising of the Rob Ford flag is kind of interesting, as was Sheen's. Let's explore this statement with regard to Drug use

    Originally posted by Amos Cochran
    Although yeah, I do have a smidge more sympathy for those who struggle with this shit in private rather than those who wear it like a badge of honor.


Most everyone struggles in silence until they are outed, as it were.

Ford for example, has been mayor of Toronto since 2010 and on the city council since 2010. He wasn't busted until last year, but prior to that, he had some incidents that he struggled through in relative silence. It's fairly clear Charlie Sheen was doing drugs a long time before Chuck Lorre and CBS cut him from the show and "winning" became a part of the dialog. He struggled in silence up to that time.

But now both of them are laughable stereotypes, but another person isn't. Now, I am not talking, really, about what you think you would do, or even me, but society.

Why does society elevate and seemingly approve of their lives when Hoffman or Hendrix or Joplin or Judy Garland or Whitney Houston or others die from the drugs they tool, but when they live on - Courtney Love, Sheen, Ford, - they are laughable in society?

Will Sheen, when he inevitably dies young (he's 48 and looks so much older) or Ford (if he says in the limelight) or Love become revered if they die?

That's what I wonder. And I think the answer is yes. we don't speak ill of the dead, but it's OK to roast the living. If Hoffman was known as a user of the Lady before he died I suspect he would be just as open to ridicule.



We'll be back right after order has been restored here in the Omni Center.

That the universe was formed by a fortuitous concourse of atoms, I will no more believe than that the accidental jumbling of the alphabet would fall into a most ingenious treatise of philosophy - Swift

Leroy
Boudin blanc








Since: 7.2.02

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#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.68
    Originally posted by AWArulz
    Why does society elevate and seemingly approve of their lives when Hoffman or Hendrix or Joplin or Judy Garland or Whitney Houston or others die from the drugs they tool, but when they live on - Courtney Love, Sheen, Ford, - they are laughable in society?


I think the failures of Ford and Sheen to be seen as victims are a result of having made their addictions a part of their public image - or, at least, embracing that image when it came to light. I think the public would be a bit more forgiving if there was a sense that they were suffering from, and not glorifying in, their personal demons. Is that fair? Well, probably not.

(Personally, given Sheen's tendency to smack around his girlfriends , I think the real hypocrisy here is that Sheen isn't suffering the same public fate as Chris Brown.)

I was unaware of Hoffman's struggles, so for me, the initial shock of losing an actor whose work I really admire, and lamenting that his contributions would go no further, seemed perfectly reasonable. Is it fair that I don't feel as sad for Amy Winehouse or Whitney Houston simply because I didn't enjoy their work as much? Maybe not, but these aren't friends, they're entertainers, and my relationship with them is purely based on aesthetics.

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Wikipedia says this was the fourth different episode written to be a series final just in case, but it seems like they've wrapped plots even more than that.
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