Monday, August 1, 2011
Marlon Brando, Jr. (April 3, 1924 – July 1, 2004), was a wonderful mimic from early childhood and was able to pick up the mannerisms of people he played, in his films. Brando, was best known for his roles in the films:
A Streetcar Named Desire (1951). A romantic drama about a troubled Blanche DuBois, who moves in with her sister in New Orleans and is tormented by her brother-in-law, while her life crumbles around her. Directed by Elia Kazan, who had also directed the original stage production. Cast: Marlon Brando, Vivien Leigh, Kim Hunter, and Karl Malden, all but Leigh were chosen from the Broadway cast of the play, while Leigh had starred in the London West End production.
A Streetcar Named Desire was the first film to win three out of four acting categories at the Academy Awards, including Best Actress for Leigh, Best Supporting Actor for Malden, and Best Supporting Actress for Hunter. Brando's performance was nominated, but.. did not win the Oscar. The film was also the first to win both Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress.
Leigh, gives a brilliant performance as the fragile woman living on the edge of sanity. Marlon Brando, delivers one of the all time great movie lines. "Hey, Stella! Hey, Stellaaa!". 'Streetcar' is a very sexy film, sometimes hard to watch, but always... fascinating.
He was also wonderful in his Academy Award-nominated performance in the film, Viva Zapata! (1952), A fictionalized story of the life of Mexican Revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, from his childhood, through his rise to power, to his death. Kazan, was impressed with the Agustin Casasola, collection of pictures and he wanted to duplicate their style for the film.
Zapata, is part of a group of men sent to confront the corrupt President Porfirio Díaz, but it does not go well. As a result, Zapata and his brother Eufemio form a rebellion and take over.
Madero takes his place, but.. Zapata, find that nothing is changed. His own brother now becomes the dictator. Madero, comes to trust the evil General Victoriano Huerta, who causes problems for the brothers .
He was also known for his role in the film adaptation of the Shakespeare play, Julius Caesar (1953). He was nominated for an Academy Award. Directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, who also wrote the uncredited screenplay. The original music score is by Miklós Rózsa. Cast: Marlon Brando as Mark Antony, James Mason as Brutus, John Gielgud as Cassius, Louis Calhern as Julius Caesar, Edmond O'Brien as Casca, Greer Garson as Calpurnia, and Deborah Kerr as Portia.
On The Waterfront(1954). A drama film, about union corruption among the longshoremen. Brando, plays the guy who snitches but keeps his honour. Directed by Elia Kazan. Cast: Marlon Brando, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Steiger, Karl Malden and Lee J. Cobb. The soundtrack score was composed by Leonard Bernstein. The film received eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director.
During the 1970s, Brando. was best known for his Academy Award-winning performance in the film, The Godfather (1972), Apocalypse Now (1979), Last Tango in Paris (1972). He also directed and starred in the western film, One-Eyed Jacks (1961).
Please click here to read Rick's,"One Eye Jacks", movie review.
I have not seen many Brando films, but I have learned that he is very well known for his "method" acting style and was considered one of the most influential actors of the 20th century.
"Regrets belong to the past".
Video: Marlon Brando Mini Documentary: