If you know me in the least you know my adoration for Kenneth Branagh runs so deep I even “loved” Thor, and now I can be even more obnoxious in my fandom by insisting that we refer to him as Sir Kenneth Branagh from now on. I say so. The Queen says so. Here he is being all humble (see! he can be humble!) about being knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list:
Because I know you’ll want to join me in celebrating Sir Kenneth by viewing some of his best performances, here are five selections to get you started.
Consider this your master class in acting. I’ve said before that Branagh’s St. Crispin’s Day speech is sure to roll your socks up and down, and I stand by that.
My Week with Marilyn
Sir Kenneth has been criticized in the past for being a little too much of a Laurence Olivier fanboy, but here Branagh puts it to good use by playing his hero to perfection.
How to Kill Your Neighbor’s Dog
Branagh as a curmudgeony kid-phobic writer in Los Angeles hanging out with a kid in order to perfect his ear for kid dialogue? Yes. Please.
I hate to admit it, but Branagh’s often at his best when he’s playing an uptight jackass. In Pirate Radio, he’s the uptight jackass trying to kill music.
Oh, this one gets special kudos for combining my husband’s two least favorite things in one with its casting of Branagh as the surrogate Woody Allen.
TNB Arts and Culture Editor CYNTHIA HAWKINS teaches creative writing at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Most of what she thinks she knows comes from movies, including how to tango, how to take someone down with a ballpoint pen, how to curse in French, and how to catch a moving train. Her work, on movies and otherwise, has appeared in literary journals and magazines such as ESPN the Magazine, Parent:Wise Magazine, The Good Men Project, New World Writing, Strange Horizons, and numerous alternative weeklies and anthologies. You can find Cynthia on Twitter and at cynthiahawkins.net.