A Face In The Crowd: Timothy Carey

“Every time a policeman gets a look at me I can see the wheels starting to turn in his head. He’s positive that I’m on his “wanted” list for at least three major crimes” – Timothy Carey

MV5BMTUxMTgyMzk1Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTkwNDQzMQ@@._V1_SX640_SY720_That long face, those droopy eyes – Timothy Carey is unmistakable, unpredictable, and electrifying with those lizard features that became both a blessing and a curse.

He appeared briefly in The Wild One alongside Lee Marvin and Marlon Brando – three heavyweights in a hokey B-movie. But is was Kubrick that first unleashed his potential. In The Killing he’s Nikki Arcane the sniper with the snarl and in Paths of Glory he is one of the court-martialled men. His looks have meant a career playing villains but here he is heartbreaking as the soldier bearing the emotional brunt from the generals supreme abuse of power.


A true maverick known for improvising and getting fired he’s worked with Roger Corman, Coppola, and Cassavetes including a memorable turn as a mafia heavy in The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (we know just from the look in Carey’s eyes that Ben Gazzara is in deep, deep shit).

Carey is an actor to get excited about, like Bruce Dern there’s a manic energy inside him, a screw loose combined with a fearless realism. He often didn’t seem like an actor at all, more like a wonderfully intuitive amateur dragged out of a skid row bar and slid in front of the camera.

Nic Cage wishes he was Timothy Carey, but Carey didn’t have things easy…

“I can’t even take a stroll through a park. As soon as women see my face they start gathering up their children and running for home.” – Timothy Carey

Posted by Rob Munday

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