Philip Seymour Hoffman

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I’m really pissed at Philip Seymour Hoffman for killing himself and leaving us with only a few movies which we haven’t seen[1].  I never met Hoffman but I absolutely loved his movies and I saw many.  An incredible talent for his multi-dimensional roles, someone that I admire for making me believe his many characters, whether as part of a quartet, a pirate, a priest,  a man “owning” others, a simpleton or as a baseball manager.  Who can ever forget his portrayal of Truman Capote

Hoffman however was a person who battled addiction issues for more than 20 years.  I ask myself how this can be, someone in the spotlight, with three children, a long-term partner, someone who could make us believe in what we saw on the screen.   A person who was a neighbor and didn’t seem to get caught up in the spotlight, but maybe that was a large part of the issue.

Many people in the spotlight have died tragic deaths, and we grieve whether or not we’ve personally known these people.  These are people who have somehow “moved” us, have helped us to realize how great we can be as human beings and what we can accomplish by letting ourselves be accessible to others.

But I ask myself why should the police have found Hoffman on his bathroom floor with a syringe in his left arm and two bags of what is believed to be heroin inside his apartment?  Instead they should have seen him walking with his partner and young children.  What demons tortured this man to the point of leaving behind his family, friends and an adoring world-wide public?  This all makes me so very angry.

Behind the anger, is sadness, that another wonderful soul is no longer part of the earth.  I wanted to see everything that Hoffman did and now, more than ever, probably will.  I’m excited to download his newest movies, but this will be tempered by the fact in knowing that these were his last, that Hoffman is finite.  One will be able to see glimpses of Hoffman in other actors, but as like all of us, he was unique, maybe even more in that so many people know who he was.  I can’t stand using the past tense to describe Hoffman, but this is the reality of using drugs.

Much will be said over the next few days and weeks about Hoffman, his life, his family, his addiction.  None of this will bring him back to us.  But we are all richer because of Philip Seymour Hoffman and his willingness to share his gifts, a lesson for all. 


Position: Lover of Life-Change Agent

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