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Rutger Hauer: A Eulogy

Posted on Jul 24, 2019 by in The Screen |

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Rutger Hauer passed away on July 19, 2019, at the age of 75.

I want to start off by saying that I had to look up whether I should writer “a eulogy” or “an eulogy”, simply because I wanted to make sure that was not how this article would be remembered. I found that it all has to do with pronunciation instead of just spelling. You learn something new everyday.

I was shocked today when I read that Rutger Hauer had passed. I guess it was fairly quick. He was with family at this home, so that is really great, but still very sad.

I remember seeing him in Blade Runner for the first time, the intensity of that character, Roy Batty, alongside Leon and Pris, just trying to survive, to overcome their own fabricated mortality. AS time went on, I have watched this film many times and still wonder about how fitting the title is, not just for the job that Harrison Ford’s Deckard lives, but for the path that the androids follow, running along the blade, that fine line, challenging everything they have been programmed to believe.

In his own way, Rutger Hauer did just that in his career. Whether it was a villain, an anti-hero, a cop, a criminal, or just a Hobo with a Shotgun, he embodied the role and really made each one his own.

Raised by actor parents who operated an acting school, he was destined for the life he led. His young life, from birth in the Netherlands, to leaving home and working on a freighter for a year at fifteen, to entering drama school and then being expelled, to spending time in the Dutch Navy, which was really not for him, all combined to build the foundations of who he was as an actor.

Very few actors have the grit and gravel to play the kind of parts that he was known for. He will be missed.

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