Brando in the Wild West.
The Wild West is a genre which has been explored in minute detail by Hollywood from the time Cinema came into inception. A lot of stars, directors have put their spin on things. Some stars have made legendary careers out of the west (John Wayne, Clint Eastwood etc.)
Now when the greatest actor decided to tackle the Wild West, what does he do. He does things his own way and puts his own brilliant spin on the WEST.
Marlon Brando has acted in 3 movies which can be called outright westerns.
One Eyed Jacks (which he directed)
The Missouri Breaks
One Eyed Jacks – Brando directs and acts wonderfully to conjure up a story of revenge and love which has a lot of subtext for the characters to convey. Have a post on it already. This is without a doubt one of the finest westerns ever, have some of the juiciest dialogues ever. A sample below -
You might be a One eyed Jack around here, Dad. But I have seen the other side of your face.
Get up, you big lard of guts
Sure kid, you will get a fair trial and then I will hang you myself
Brando directs wonderfully and is a picture postcard movie to see.
The Appaloosa – A decent movie, no great shakes, Brando does his brooding bit, has some genuinely wonderful moments, again lovingly shot. John Saxon as the villain has a great role and Brando’s brooding goes well with Saxon’s bravado. Has an arm wresting match between the 2 with a scorpion for company. A wonderful moment, which stays with you long after you have seen the movie. A movie which was released when Brando’s career was on the downswing, it failed at the box office but definitely not as bad as the critics would have it.
The Missouri Breaks – The most eccentric western ever. Again have a post on it. This has no redeemable characters and has Brando with Nicholson. 2 of the biggest icons of pop culture together as adversaries in different western. An eccentric western which debunks every traditional western tradition. Great ride with Brando holding sway over the proceedings. The ends result being one of Brando’s most mesmerizing star performances. He is odd, funny, sadistic, quirky and more while Nicholson is the lovable composed rogue.
What all these movies do is provide us with the fact that Brando was never predictable 9 times out of 10. The routine was something which he hated and thus came the unexpected, the strange, the wonderful magic of Brando unleashed on a genre, which has always been good guys v/s bad guys, leaving no room for the grey in between.
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Brando in the Wild West.
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