Each time I introduced Ernie, the crowd erupted viscerally. This wasn't cavalier Hollywood fandom. With Ernie, the connection was much more substantial, much more emotional. Ernest Borgnine mattered to their lives, and they wanted to show him.
About 1,800 fans of Turner Classic Movies partied last weekend on a the network's first ever Caribbean ocean cruise, complete with screenings, Q&A and veteran actors, including Ernest Borgnine, Tippi Hedren and Eva Marie Saint.
Borgnine spoke to me primarily about portraying a retired World War II Marine in Another Harvest Moon -- it's obvious the jovial actor had to use all the talent he has to be convincing as a fellow at the end of his rope.
Those wanting to get closer to that more traditional and comforting take on the eternal "boy meets girl" predicament need only look back and revisit the great film romances of the past, movies that reflect those long-vanished ideals.
I look at the new action movies coming out, and I have to wonder: Where's our new Lee Marvin? The manly man, the bad guy turned good guy, the guy who's so ugly he's almost beautiful, the guy who takes no prisoners?