Friends: Trifecta

By February 12, 2010May 10th, 2017Character Roles

A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out. – Anon

The best friend is the hero’s confidant, always there in a pinch, ready and willing, but not always able to help. Often the best friend is there simply to listen and provide moral support.

But the best friend can also take on a larger role and become involved in the main through line of the action as he or she goes along the journey with the hero. But even though the best friend usually means well, he or she will often inadvertently mess things up for the hero. 

Occasionally, the best friend will feel threatened by the hero and purposely create conflict by giving bad advice, being jealous, pushing the hero away from the goal, or trying to stop the hero from growing or changing.

Best Friends in film:

Dragline (George Kennedy), fellow prison mate in Cool Hand Luke (1967).

Jimmy (Robert De Niro), fellow mob gangster in Goodfellas (1990).

Red (Morgan Freeman), fellow inmate in The Shawshank Redemption (1994).

Charles (Paul Bdettany), fellow Princeton student and Nash’s roommate in A Beautiful Mind (2001).

Jack (Thomas Haden Church), Miles’ soon-to-be-married actor friend and college roommate in Sideways (2004).

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Michael Schilf

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