- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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- kevin sellers
Comparisons to "The Shootist" are inevitable. Both films were made around the same time and are the last works of male Hollywood icons, in which said icons play crotchety old men dying of cancer who are forced to act as surrogate fathers to spoiled adolescents. Alas, The Duke has it all over Bill Holden in the Farewell Dept. Where "Shootist" was restrained and spare with taut direction that kept a good balance between action and contemplation, "Earthling" features large swaths of sentimental, environmentally conscious dialogue full of Big Life Lessons like "Fight Everyday To Live" and "Listen To Nature", as well as Garden of Eden imagery in the last twenty minutes, with gamboling koalas and steamy hot springs that look like Australia's outback has been magically transposed to Yellowstone, that is frankly cloying. Also, it's more than a little annoying that Holden, playing an Aussie, does not even try out the faintest imitation of a Down Under accent. I mean, I know he's an icon and all that but when he intones how he's returning home to the bush to die, in that patented Illinois accent of his, it's a real credibility killer. On the plus side, other than his accent Holden's performance is quite touching, and Ricky Schroeder is a fine child actor, as well. And Don McAlpine's cinematography brings out the beauty, if not exactly the Biblical sort, of the Blue Mts. Give it a C plus.
Bill Holden is wondorous
Wow....what a great performance at the end of his life!! Compare that to the cartoon crap of today!!
the respected asshole
the story slogged along a slight bit. I still thought it was interesting. the attitude of the main character may seem unbelievable or selfish.. some will not agree about that. the part of the world responsible for this film.. has made a number of stories shadowing the theme of the story. they have done it well.. kind of strange though. this seems more like the last real William holden film. something like s.o.b. was like ..sure blake..we are buddies..i will go along for the ride. in this story you get to see holden the asshole .. holden the remorseful.. holden the resolute.. holden the accepting.. holden the weary..all the aspects of the being he was in stories. the last sequence when he is home.. is the best part of the whole story. it is about dealing with life as much about dealing with death. while I do not think of the work of holden as totally inviting..i do think of him as having less career ambiguity than most in his line of work. he simply stayed his course and he deserves acknowledgement for that.
Saw this many years ago. Would love to see it again. great movie. different from all the same old stuff you see today!!William Holden was the best!! 5 stars
This is a real class A movie. The story line is solid, and the actring is terrific. I think this is the best thing William Holden ever did. It's better than Stalag 17 and Sunset Boulevard, combined.It is difficult role, compounded by the fact there are only two characters.
I would love to have a copy of this movie. I think it was William Holden's last role. Ricky Schroder is excellent, also. The survival story intertwined with a dying man's struggle to go home is a movie that I have not forgotten.
I saw this film as a child, I now would like to share it with my child. Years ago I recorded it on DVD, but it won't play. I don't even know if the film still holds up. All's I have is the warm childhood memory of the film. If there is anyone who has a copy please post a review so as to get in contact.
This is some of the best acting that William Holden has ever done. The part of a dieing man who has only a short time to teach a boy to make it in in a hard land fore from any help.He has no time to be kind to the boy to save his live, but you know how much he comes to care for the boy. TRY TO FIND THIS IN VHS AND YOU WILL SEE WHAT IT COST AND HOW MUCH PEOPLE VALUE IT!!!!
What a great time spent watching this movie. William Holden plays such a realistic father figure to Ricky Shroder's "Shawn". Not a "coming of age" story, but more like a passing of the torch. I'm only sorry that "The Earthling" is not available on home video, neither VHS or DVD.