I have to say Val Kilmer. Having said that - I have a nearly unhealthy affinity for “Tombstone” and the only other movie I’ve watched was “Wyatt Earp” where Dennis Quaid did the honours (and I’ve never managed to make it all the way through that movie).
In terms of an iconic performance I’d stand by my choice, but in terms of representing Doc authentically…
The only book I’ve read that is dedicated to Doc is the one by Gary L Roberts, and I’ve only read through it once. However I got the impression that the real Doc had more fire behind his temper when it flared, and he had a polarizing effect on people.
Val’s portrayal depicted him as smooth, if not charming, even when drunk. He responded to adversaries with glib derision rather than irascibility. And while that made for a droll and likeable character, could it perhaps have come at the expense of a few degrees of accuracy? Or maybe he really did goad others with calculated condescension, and some people took exception to it while others saw it as “caustic wit”…
But as I say, my opinion stems from a strong bias to the movie “Tombstone” and nearly complete ignorance of the other performances. So my contribution floats somewhere in the realm of an uneducated opinion and an invalid argument :/
I suspect that the division of opinion pretty much breaks down along two lines of thinking. If what you are after from the performance is some semblance of historical accuracy/authenticity, then perhaps... more
I have always thought Dennis Quaid's Doc was the most authentic because, as pointed out by Karen M., "...the real Doc had more fire behind his temper when it flared, and he had a polarizing effect on people."... more
If you look at Dennis Quaid when he costarred in The Long Riders and put him beside John Henry Holliday’s dental school graduation photo, you’ll see that Dennis Quaid, at a similar age VERY closely resembled... more
...I agree with your appreciation of Dennis Quaid's portrayal. I've never seen Doc as a rogue charmer as many might like to envision him. I really find him thoroughly unlikable and I think he had a hard... more
Karen, I totally agree with your choice of Val Kilmer. He should have been given an Oscar for his performance... alas... Hollywood. I couldn't get thru "Wyatt Earp," either... much too long. Shar... more