Appreciating all that makes America special

Actor: Jack Nicholson

Jack got a busted nose in Chinatown. Uploaded by

Jack got a busted nose in Chinatown. Uploaded by

Jack Nicholson has played some of the most fascinating roles in movie history. He’s been the Joker in Batman… J.J. Gittes in Chinatown… Randle McMurphy in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest… Jack Torrance in The Shining… and Colonel Jessep in A Few Good Men. And that’s just some of the high points.

H-e-e-e-re's Johnny! Uploaded to Flickr by stephen-kingdotch.

H-e-e-e-re's Johnny! Uploaded to Flickr by stephen-kingdotch.

One of the ways we know an actor is truly great is that he makes each part so distinctively his own that we can’t imagine anyone else in the role. And with Nicholson, there’s an edge about him that helps make his every character unpredictable.

I don’t consider Five Easy Pieces a highlight of his career, but the diner scene is quintessential Nicholson. He wants breakfast made his way, and the waitress won’t allow any substitutions. Look at how Jack controls every moment of this scene:


While it seems that Nicholson dominates most of his movies, in each of his movies for which he’s won Academy Awards, his co-star also won Best Actress: Louise Fletcher in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Great American Thing No. 140), Helen Hunt in As Good as it Gets, and Shirley MacLaine in Terms of Endearment. In addition to the three wins, he’s been nominated nine additional times. He received a Life Achievement Award from the American Film Institute in 1994.

Oh, and he also played the President of the United States in Mars Attacks! Ack ack. Ack ack ack.

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  1. Hello from Ukraine.

    Very interesting Blog site you make, I like it.

    We know of such USA actors here, and Mr Nicholson is no exception !

    As for me, his best role was Joker, I think maybe that was closest to his character in the real life as he has given in his movies.

    “Beauty and the beast” he said to Kim Bassinger as they dance on roof, “but if anyone else calls you beast, I’ll rip their lungs out”


    Marina Demchuck.

    Rivne – Ukraine.

    • Thank you for your post, Marina. Best I can tell, the first from outside the USA. I appreciate your nice comments.

  2. jack n was a good joker, so was heath ledger, but the original joker back in the 60s was ceasar romero