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Matthew Modine: The Hollywood Interview

Matthew Modine: Better Angels

By

Alex Simon

Matthew Modine has been something of an iconoclast most of his working life. After being groomed for ‘80s teen idol status in early films such as Private School and Vision Quest, Modine was also one of the first actors of his generation, along with Sean Penn, to take on riskier projects, such as Robert Altman's Streamers, Alan Parker’s Birdy, Gillian Armstrong’s Mrs. Soffel, and Alan J. Pakula’s Orphans. It was his lead role as the cynical Marine Private Joker in Stanley Kubrick’s Vietnam epic Full Metal Jacket that put Modine into the pantheon of young actors who were more than just pretty faces and knowing winks at the camera. This, after all, was the young man who turned down the lead in Top Gun, arguably the prototypical ‘80s blockbuster, due to its cold war politics. From the beginning,

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