Gregory Peck (Born April 5, 1916-  )

Few actors have conveyed the sense of dignity that the great Gregory Peck communicates on the screen. Despite this screen image of towering respect, Peck has never been afraid to take his shot at playing the bad guys. As Josef Mengele in the Boys from Brazil Peck his grotesquely frightening. In Duel in the Sun plays Lewt McCanles with an oily confidence and an arrogant nastiness that often comes off as overacting. It is the dignified roles that will live in our collective screen memories forever. Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird defines everything a father and a man should be. Peck was a deserved Oscar winner for Best Actor as Finch. In Gentlenmen's Agreement Peck played Phil Green, a writer determined to discover the extent of anti-Semitism in America. In The Big Country Peck even towers over the great Western landscape with an inner strength that seems to defy the barrel of a gun.
     Gregory Peck was comfortable carrying a gun whether playing in Westerns or War movies. In The Gunfighter Peck painted a frightening portrait of a cold trigger man with an icy draw.     Only the Valiant saw Peck playing a cavalry martinet while in Pork Chop Hill he played a Lieutenant leading a platoon in Korea. Comedy was never considered Peck's strong suit but in Roman Holiday he captures all the breeziness opposite Audrey Hepburn to help create a classic American comedy. Playing a journalist again in Designing Woman opposite Lauren Bacall, Peck does not capture the magic he found in Rome. An unusual but delightful Peck turn is in a small British film called Man with a Million. Peck finds the right comic tone for a penniless man that suddenly finds himself in possession of a million pound note.
     Whether watching the handsome actor lead a team of mis-matched commandos on a suicide mission in The Guns of Navarone or as a lawyer in Cape Fear or To Kill a Mockingbird, whether wielding a sword and sailing big ships in Captain Horatio Hornblower or The World in His Arms or defining Captain Ahab in Moby Dick another sea-going turn, Peck is an actor who commands the screen.

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To Kill a Mockingbird (SE)/ A,A

From the great novel by Harper Lee, this tale of growing up in the 1930s South is splendidly evocative of place and period. Gregory Peck is splendid. Direction impeccable.

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