- The one and only film directed by Brando
- There are so many rumors about the production—it was a little 1960’s version of Heaven’s Gate with the production issues
- Brando may not have known what he was doing (he’s an undeniably great artist and actor) behind the camera but he hired the right DP (Charles Lang has a crazy-strong resume) and surrounded himself with a talented cast (Karl Malden, Katy Jurado, Ben Johnson, Slim Pickens)
- A great sandstorm sequence at 20 minutes
- Boils down to a fairly simple revenge story- but certainly paced like an art-house film in the way it’s told- leisurely- just over 140 mins. Characters don’t always act consistently- and I mean that as a compliment-nuanced- it is intentional here which is aligned with relaxed pace
- Brando is Brando in front of the camera- always compelling, long pauses, eating food (opens with him eating a banana, playing with a match in his mouth), brooding
Brando is Brando in front of the camera- always compelling, long pauses, eating food (opens with him eating a banana, playing with a match in his mouth), brooding
- Plays a bit of a martyr here and casts himself as such- tortured and whipped
- 75% of the movie is shot on the gorgeous seashore – believe it’s California for the most part- maybe even Pebble Beach—the wind, waves, shoreline a character in the film
75% of the movie is shot on the gorgeous seashore – believe it’s California for the most part- maybe even Pebble Beach—the wind, waves, shoreline a character in the film
- A great shot at 87 minutes of Brando with the mangled hand sitting on the rocks
A great shot at 87 minutes of Brando with the mangled hand sitting on the rocks– apparently Brando would wait hours for the waves to get just right- certainly pays off here
- Karl Malden is superb here just as he always is. He’s a frequent sparring partner of Brando’s (Streetcar in 1951 and On the Waterfront in 1954) and it is a compliment to them both how good they both always come off. The fact that Malden isn’t just blown off the screen is remarkable
- A nice (but truncated— even with all this running time) showdown in front of a fountain
- It has nothing to do with the end result but great stories about Brando behind the camera in multiple biographies—getting drunk on set and then being unable to shoot (method acting- haha).
- Kubrick as director was attached at one point before shooting started
- Shoot took almost 2 years to complete, original cut was over 5 hours, cost a lot of money (this is my Heaven’s Gate comparison), apparently Brando would wait for the perfect waves for hours on location
- Recommend but not in the top 10 of 1961
This is supposed to be the movie that Kubrick would direct, it was the only genre that he missed playing, do you think it would have gone well? (not good to guess) but something of Spartacus quality probably would have come out
@Aldo- certainly fun to think about. I would’ve loved to see a Kubrick western— and/or a collaboration with Brando (even if their temperaments seem like they may not have gelled)
I think it’s a good thing Kubrick didn’t direct it (as much as I love the sound of a Kubrick western with Brando). His back-to-back experiences on Spartacus and the preproduction of One-Eyed Jacks I think was really important to his development as an artist. Had he stayed in Hollywood instead of moving to England we probably wouldn’t have the Kubrick we have now.
@Thomas Locke. You mean Kubrick would never have filmed 2001?
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