Nebraska is just out on DVD. It was one of my favourite films of last year featuring one of my favourite actors. Here is my list of Bruce’s five best performances.

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Nebraska review

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  • Comment number 20. Posted by Brian - New Forest

    on 20 Apr 2014 09:31

    Just to echo the love for Family Plot, the only Hitchcock which I saw during it's original theatrical run (at least twice). It might be a slightly out of character romp (but for the dabs of macabre humour), but it's jolly for all that and a perfect intro to the master for a teenager. Probably the first time I saw Dern (and let's not forget Karen Black) on the big screen. He's a perfect foil for Barbara Harris wacky psychic.

    I'm also a big Silent Running fan, as much for it being one of the first films to treat space as just another job, not the gleaming ships of space opera or Kubrick, Trumbull's are really lived in. Dern of course carries the film (with assistance from Huey Duey and Louie). I might even credit my conservation work as being partially inspired by its slightly heavy handed message, although I'm sure I wouldn't resort to his extreme measures.

    The only downside of this appreciation of Dern is that when you look at his career, you see more he's the most interesting thing about them films than plain old good films. You feel he's been tragically underutilized, and hopefully the attention garnered by Nebraska could ameliorate that.

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  • Comment number 19. Posted by seronie

    on 19 Apr 2014 14:42

    The 'Burbs!!!

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  • Comment number 18. Posted by Perry Ward

    on 17 Apr 2014 18:55

    It's been said already, but I think it's worth repeating: THE BURBS!

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  • Comment number 17. Posted by WSV

    on 17 Apr 2014 17:33

    Bruce Dern’s done a hell of a lot of work over the years, and from the smattering I’ve seen of his films I’d suggest that they have been a bit hit and miss; but when he’s good, he’s very good indeed. I can’t argue with your picks, but I’d also, like everyone else, mention ‘The Burbs’ and I have a soft spot for ‘Support Your Local Sheriff!’ as well. For me though, ‘Nebraska’ tops the list; a must have DVD.

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  • Comment number 16. Posted by Hackenbush

    on 16 Apr 2014 22:19

    Oops. Forgot to mention 'They Shoot Horses Don't They', great film and great cast.

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  • Comment number 15. Posted by Hackenbush

    on 16 Apr 2014 22:17

    I've always been a big fan of Silent Running and watched it recently for the first time in years and the only thing that dissapointed was Dern's somewhat hammy performance, dissapointed because he is one of my favourite actors.

    Delighted to see Family Plot get a few mentions, it's brilliant and of course he had a brief appearance in Marnie, another Hitchcock hidden gem. Don't forget he got to shoot John Wayne in the back in 'The Cowboys' and 'That Championship Season' is another little know underrated eighties film.

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  • Comment number 14. Posted by Malthus

    on 16 Apr 2014 19:30

    Hi Mark,

    Thanks for your Bruce Dern picks. I love Silent Running but also remember being blown away by The King of Marvin Gardens when I saw it 30 years ago. I haven't seen it since, but I still remember the powerful ending to this day.

    I was wondering:-

    What are your favourite films of all time? - or (if it's an easier question) what are some of your favourite films of all time?

    Keep up the good work. Best wishes,

    Mal from London

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  • Comment number 13. Posted by Enda_Neu

    on 16 Apr 2014 18:56

    No room for The 'Burbs? A quirky classic from back in the days when Tom Hanks still made goofy comedies, but undoubtedly the star of the show is Bruce Dern who steals every single scene he's in.

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  • Comment number 12. Posted by Cash_Black

    on 16 Apr 2014 17:37

    I have not seen Nebraska yet but I am really not a fan of Bruce Dern at all. I find he is usually a detriment to anything he appears, I fact he is the main reap I dislike Silent Running. However he is marvelous in The Driver!

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  • Comment number 11. Posted by Aaryk Noctivagus

    on 16 Apr 2014 14:17

    "5. goodfella2459
    15TH APRIL 2014 - 17:33
    I quite enjoy Family Plot. It starts off pretty bad with the fortune teller thing at the beginning, but it ends up being quite fun I think. It isn't as bad as its made out to be."

    Who makes that film out to be bad? Its a Hitchcock... the very last Hitchcock... and whilst it feels very 70s and almost like a good 'Columbo', I wouldn't call it a bad film by any chalk. I'd call it a minor Hitchcock.

    Really glad to see somebody mention 'Family Plot' here though... I haven't got a favourite Bruce Dern film, but 'Family Plot' and 'Silent Running' stand out for me... if memory serves, Dern appaeared in several Alfred Hitchcock presents or hour TV episodes, and Hitch really wanted to work on film with the actor... which he did, right at the very end.

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