Tuesday, November 30, 2004

R.I.P. John Drew Barrymore

John Drew Barrymore, son of actors John Barrymore and Dolores Costello and father of Drew Barrymore, has passed away. Coincidentally, I recently watched a movie of his called HIGH SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL (1958). A campy teen exploitation tale that plays like a pulp fiction novel, the film stars Russ Tamblyn as a baby-faced cop working undercover in a high school trying to bust a dope ring run by Jackie Coogan. Barrymore plays a badass high school drug dealer. In one scene, Barrymore slouches in front of a classroom and delivers his version of Columbus discovering America, a monologue filled with hipster slang. His charisma is so strong in the scene that you could practically feel it though the television screen. It made me want to seek out more films he was in.

Drew Barrymore has released a statement about her father, saying, "He was a cool cat. Please smile whien you think of him." If you would like to read more about J.D. Barrymore's (apparently troubled) life, check out his obituary here.

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