Courtesy of ever-reliable undeservedly-criticized Wikipedia, Robin McLaurin Williams was born on July 21, 1951 in Chicago, Illinois. He passed away less than this past year,on the 11th of April.
This blog is a tribute to the man who made the world’s stomachs sore from laughter. The man who brought the world to tears of joy.
His catapult into celebrity began with his guest appearance as an alien named Mork from the planet Ork in Happy Days. From his two appearances in Happy Days, Robin Williams was given his own TV series, Mork & Mindy.
His first major film was The World According to Garp (1982). His next major film, a hugely successful hit, Good Morning, Vietnam (1987). This is the Robin William’s movie that I watched this week.
I had never watched the movie before, nor did I know from where the popular phrase “Good Morning Vietnam!” began. Having been William’s earliest hit movie, I thought it only right to start this blog-tribute at the beginning of this comedian’s rise to fame on the silver screen. His performance in this morning earned him an Oscar nomination and an Academy Award.
Right from his first scene from this movie, you can see his vivacity, energy, and joy. Robin Williams’ joy and good natured sense of humor creates a totally lovable character in Adrian Cronauer. Adrian is a talk show host that is brought in to Saigon, South Vietnam (now known as Ho Chi Minh City). There he runs a morning talk show that raises the American troops spirits during the Vietnam War.
GOOOOOOOOOOODD MOOORRRNNNNIINNNGGG VIETNAM!
Cronauer (Williams) quickly becomes loved by all the U.S. troops. However, not all of his superiors appreciate his humor. After walking out of a cafe seconds before it explodes, he is told that he is not allowed to report the incident as news. A rattled Cronauer does what he believes is right and speaks the truth about the cafe bombing to the American troops. He gets suspended from the radio show.
In the meanwhile, Cronauer befriends a Vietnamese boy in pursuit of the boy’s beautiful older sister. When a jock soldier starts picking on his Vietnamese friend, Cronauer fights back with humor.. and force.
“I gotta tell you something. You know, I’ve been all around the world, seen a lot of places and a lot of people. I have never ever in my travels come across a man as large as you, with as much muscles, who has absolutely no p#^($.” (Headbutt)
In the end, William’s character provides a unique perspective on war and its effects on the citizens of the invaded countries. Good Morning, Vietnam! also criticizes military censorship and brutality.
If you have not seen this movie before, I strongly advise you to change that. It is currently on instant Netflix, and will provide you with approximately 1 hour 58 minutes and 30 seconds of entertaining procrastination.
I hope you continue to tune into my weekly analysis of a Robin William’s life, as well as a movie character he portrayed. He was an amazing, hilarious man who will be remembered through the laughter and smiles he brought to so many people. I hope that this blog can help others remember the great actor, comedian, and person that was Robin Williams.
“Comedy is acting out optimism”-Robin Williams