The bear-like, Brooklyn-born, large-of-spirit Paul Sorvino has passed at age of 83. I ran into Sorvino at the Westport Country Playhouse tavern in '77 or '78, and what an aura...he was probably a little bombed but full of feeling and come-what-may passion...I smiled and patted Sorvino on the shoulder in a brotherly way and said "Yo, The Gambler!" and he went "oohhhh, yeah, yeah." I was referring to Hips, the loan shark in Karel Riesz and James Toback's 1974 film, and that moment when he tells a deadbeat gambler who owes more than he has "you worthless contemptible deadbeat motherfucking dog...die!" Yes, his defining performance is Paul Cicero in Goodfellas ("Now I gotta turn my back") but let's not forget his performances in The Day of the Dolphin, Bloodbrothers, The Brink's Job, Cruising, Reds (Louis Fraina!), That Championship Season (Phil Romano!), Dick Tracy ('Lips' Manlis!), The Firm (Tommie Morolto!), Nixon (Henry Kissinger!), and Bulworth.