His politics aren’t mine, but films being the premier American art, and he being one of cinema’s most respected actors, Douglas deserves a heartfelt happy birthday greeting on turning 100, and some recognition for a body of work that is big and good. Very good.
Kirk Douglas gave a lot of terrific performances over his career. Leaving out Spartacus, here are my six favorites: A Letter to Three Wives, The Juggler, Lust for Life, Seven Days in May, The Bad and the Beautiful, and Paths of Glory. The last, written and directed by Stanley Kubrick, is regarded as one of the best films ever made, with tremendous performances by Adolphe Menjou (an original National Review subscriber!), George Macready, Richard Anderson (insipid was never done better), and of course Douglas, as Colonel Dax. I’ve seen it some 20 times and would watch it again right now if I could. Here is a clip.