Wednesday, May 02, 2007


Turner Classic Movies is running an absolutely fantastic documentary about a man who almost overnight changed the face of acting in America. I haven't seen the second part yet (each half is 90 minutes), but the first is outstanding, with a lot of new interview material and excellent research into his early life. I highly recommend Tivoing it. The show will be rerun in its entirety on May 12th.


Anonymous said...

I missed the 1st part but caught the second. I'm guessing the first part is better. Highlights of the 2nd part include James Caan explaining the opening monologue in THE GODFATHER (an explanation which *all* actors should listen carefully to) and several people commenting on his performance in LAST TANGO IN PARIS. It's a shame that most audiences today -- including film students -- have not seen this latter movie.

The other highlight was Russell Means talking about Brando's Native American protests, including the famous Oscar turndown.

However, this becomes a lovefest about Brando with some facts conveniently missing: that the woman from the Oscar broadcast wasn't really Native and his famous comments about Jews on Larry King. There is also attempts to show that Brando was an all-around genius -- as if being an artist wasn't enough.

The Hollywood anecdotes are fine, but pale compared to the discussion of Brando's acting. And Jane Fonda adds little, but this is on the TURNER Movie Classic Network, after all.

Because of these flaws, the 2nd part of the doc should have stuck to having actors talk about his acting. I'm betting that this was the focus of Part 1 and am hoping that TMC will rebroadcast this portion of the doc so I can see it.

Bondelev said...

You're forgetting that Turner and Fonda went through a pretty unhappy divorce.

The show will be rerun in its entirety on May 12th.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I know about the acrimonious split.

But you aren't factoring in that both are media-whores and love the limelight -- for any reason at all!

One wonders why Jane was in that god awful hat during her interview. Even Dennis Hopper looked more together.

Thanks for the tip about the rebroadcast.

Bondelev said...

The bigger question about Fonda on the show, WTF was she wearing? And why the HAT!? And even worse, why the flag dangling from the hat?

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's to hide a growing bald spot? (See also: reason why older folks wear scarves.)

ZiggyMustard said...

I couldn't hear any thing Jane was saying because of that damn hat.