For decades, filmmakers have used a character’s drink of choice to help audiences delve deeper into their personality and background. Bourbon, in particular, has become the favorite drink of heroes and fearless tough guys in cinema. Bourbon is frequently portrayed as the drink of those who radiate confidence, overt masculinity, and in some cases, a throw-out-the-rulebook mindset.
From admired cult-classics to modern-day action films to binge-worthy shows, the appearance of Four Roses on the big screen and in television have helped elevate our brand back to stardom. In observance of this month’s television and film award shows, we’re taking a look at some of the movies and TV shows featuring a Four Roses cameo.
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, 2019
In creator Amy Sherman-Palladino’s breakout comedy-drama series The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Miriam “Midge” Maisel, played by Rachel Brosnahan, is a housewife living in Manhattan during the late 1950s whose marriage is slowly collapsing when she decides to pursue a career in stand-up comedy. Miriam enlists the aid of Alex Borstein’s character Susie Myerson, an employee at the comedy nightclub Gaslight, in her bid to gain some sort of control and pleasure out of her life. In an era when women were expected to be at home with the children and housekeeping, Borstein’s character Susie also stands outside the norms of society by taking the role of Miriam’s manager.
In the series, Four Roses is featured several times as Susie’s drink of choice, complementing her character’s discernable desire to persevere, to be noteworthy, and to leave her mark on the world.
Mad Men, 2007
AMC’s explosively popular show Mad Men follows the life of Jon Hamm’s character, Don Draper. Don is an advertising executive at one of New York’s most prestigious ad agencies at the beginning of the 1960s. Draper has an unrivaled talent for understanding the desires and wants of others and for effectively pitching and selling ideas, all while keeping his true traumatic and mysterious past closely guarded.
In season 4 of the series, Don’s assistant opens her desk drawer to reveal a bottle of Four Roses. The characters gaze reverently at the bottle as if to say, “How did you manage to find this?!” before excitedly pouring a round of drinks.
Death Proof, 2007
Quentin Tarantino’s 2007 film Death Proof, starring Kurt Russell, Zoe Bell and Rosario Dawson, embodies all that we have come to love and expect from a Tarantino movie. Russell plays a scarred stuntman with a sinister past ready to put his life on the line for the perfect shot.
Russell’s character, Stuntman Mike, is injured during a scene and reaches for his glove compartment. Pulling out a bottle of Four Roses, Stuntman Mike uses the Bourbon to sterilize his wounds in a moment of true machismo, using the bare minimum at his disposal to disinfect the cut and get back to the task at hand.
French Connection II, 1975
In William Friedkin’s gritty police action-drama French Connection II, Gene Hackman reprises his role as ‘Popeye’ Doyle, a New York City cop traveling to Marseille, France, to find the drug smuggler who eluded him in the first film, The French Connection. Doyle is a detective who plays by his own rules and will do whatever it takes to bring the criminals to justice, even if that means traversing the globe.
In an archetypal fish-out-of-water scene, the veteran detective arrives in France and attempts to order a “Four Roses straight up with a water on the side” from a local bar, only to find that the bartender cannot understand what he is ordering.
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