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ReelTalk Movie Reviews
Bruce Willis & His Movies
by Betty Jo Tucker

Although Bruce Willis is only 67 years old, he has decided to step down from acting because he’s suffering from aphasia. That’s a difficult diagnosis for anyone, but especially for actors. Symptoms include memory loss and  word loss. So just imagine trying to remember lines while making a movie in this debilitating condition. 

I watched Willis in Fortress: Sniper’s Eye this weekend and felt worried about him. He didn’t seem like the actor we have seen in so many wonderful films. Granted, he’s playing a man recuperating from battle wounds during most of the movie, but he still didn’t seem himself.

As a fan, I’ve enjoyed most of Willis’ performances. He caught my eye way back in 1985 in the “Moonlighting” TV show. Like so many others, I knew he had what it takes to entertain viewers of all ages. Handsome? Yes. Funny? Yes. Charisma? Yes.

So it was no surprise to me when Willis made audience’s laugh in 1987’s Blind Date comedy and wowed everyone in 1988’s blockbuster Die Hard . No wonder he began to get more and more offers from major studios. According to IMDb, Willis has 144 film credits. My favorites include Armageddon, The Whole Nine Yards, Bandits, Pulp Fiction, Once Upon a Time in Venice, The Fifth Element, Lucky Number Slevin, Unbreakable, The Sixth Sense, and The Jackal.

Here are comments about Willis from four of my movie reviews:

“Bruce Willis and Haley Joel Osment are wonderful in their emotional scenes together. They project a poignant rapport similar to that achieved by Harrison Ford and Lukas Haas in Witness.” --- The Sixth Sense

Once Upon a Time in Venice

boasts something new and not to miss.

A private eye? Well, new that’s not.

But Bruce Willis gives all he’s got.

He even skateboards without clothes.

while fending off some ugly blows.

And more than that, it’s fun to see

Bruce work hard finding his doggie.”

“It’s also fun to see Bruce Willis (in a bad toupee) lurking all over the place as the confident Mr. Goodkat, a hit man working both sides of the fence.” --- Lucky Number Slevin  

Although Willis underplays his role as an unhappy security guard, and Jackson comes on a bit too strong as an obsessed gallery owner, these two fine actors are just as compelling to watch together as they were in Die Hard with a Vengeance.” --- Unbreakable

It’s my pleasure to honor Willis by closing with the following poem.

.Bruce Willis now no longer acts.

His fans will miss him. That’s the facts.

Since “Moonlighting” he’s been our guy

as witty hero and P.I.


Over one hundred acting parts.

Action, drama, & tugging hearts.

No matter what role he portrayed

his mission was it be well-played.  


Aphasia now has blocked his game.

But many movies earned him fame.

We wish him and his family well.

 His film legacy? Time will tell.


(PHOTO: Die Hard film poster on IMDb)

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