Jared Harris is perhaps a name not often spoken on the tongues of cinematic fans, which is a crying shame. Harris has been a household actor on this side of the pond for so long it is unforgivable to forget him. Born in London (and a proper London geezer, I can tell you), Harris launched his career straight into film playing bit characters in The Rachel Papers, The Public Eye and Natural Born Killers. He had prominence in television movies playing characters such as Andy Warhol in I Shot Andy Warhol and as recurring villain David Robert Jones in Fringe. His latest film, The Quiet Ones, is out on DVD today and Harris is a powerful driving force throughout. But why not check out more of his movies and get acquainted with the brilliant actor?
Honourable Mention: Mad Men and Fringe. He is bloody great in both of them but seeing as this is film, we can’t include them.
Andrew Scott, Vincent Price and many more have donned the face of Professor James Moriarty. But with the famous Guy Ritchie adaptation fresher on our minds (except for Andrew Scott’s ‘did you miss me?’ return to the BBC Drama), we all can’t help but love Jared Harris in the role. Excellent playing across from Robert Downey Jr’s unforgettable portrayal of Sherlock Holmes, Harris exudes intellect and mystery as the master criminal tests Sherlock’s skill. Not only has he enough charisma to pull off Moriarty with flare, Harris also adds a dynamism and villainy to the role that wonderfully captures the most dangerous man in London.
Probably one of the darkest movies of all time that caused quite a controversy upon release in 1998. Todd Solondz sparked flames on the lips of critics and audiences with his heavy themes of sexual abuse. Though billed as a “dark comedy”, the decay of humanity here is much more a solemn affair and it certainly achieved acclaim for Solondz ability to effectively tackle them, even if it makes you sick to your stomach. Harris stars as Vlad, a Russian student who fools his teacher in to a sordid affair. Though amongst the cast of Phillip Seymour Hoffman and many more, Harris still makes his talent stand out and strongly too.
Yes. There are more actors in Lincoln than Daniel Day-Lewis’ Oscar Winning performance where he completely immerses himself in one of America’s best love Presidents. The movie revolves around the pivotal moment where Lincoln strives to abolish slavery and level with his wife who is going slightly loopy. Though the courageous and immerse portrayal of Lincoln is the main draw here, Harris does well to create a stirring and captivating performance as Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant, fighting on side with Lincoln and leading an army to victory as part of the Civil War. Harris, though a small role in theory, genuinely shines here.
Jarred Harris is quickly scouring up the ranks of Hollywood and British movies. When you’re cast in a David Fincher movie, however, that is a role that you can happily put on your portfolio and say “ah yes, good things are happening”. Though his role may seem small and unassuming compared with Brad Pitt’s ageing man child thing and Cate Blanchett’s solitary love interest character, Harris plays a sea captain (argggh) who takes Benjamin on board, giving him life lessons and work experience. A little eccentric and very funny, Harris' character Mike is intensely memorable. He also saves the day making the ultimate sacrifice so he plays an intensely important role.
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Kenneth Branagh is more famed for creating the most beautiful adaptations from Shakespeare and has, by far, the best cinematic version of Frankenstein ever, (and I mean ever). Oh yes, and Thor. But beside all that, Branagh has put in some intensely hilarious performances and acting skills. However, it’s Harris here that steals the scene in this American comedy playing the polar opposite of Branagh’s character, Peter as an oddball, off kilter version of the lead role. Harris is unforgettable and hilarious in this film. It'll make you laugh out loud and is often a forgotten comedy so make sure you find it for Harris' wonderful performance.
The Quiet Ones is out on DVD now!