Sunday, February 07, 2010

Monty in Repertory

Thanks to reader Andy and just a heads up for anyone visiting NYC this spring. BAM in Brooklyn, which often houses great film series and retrospectives, is celebrating Montgomery Clift staring March 11th. They're calling it "That's Montgomery Clift, Honey!" after the Clash song "The Right Profile" a rather irreverent song about the car crash and addictions that derailed his life which you can listen to if you must...



But irreverent references, or not. They're showing 11 of the 17 pictures he made before his death at 45 and that's cause for celebration. Notably missing are Judgment at Nuremberg --probably because it's a supporting role and he was always the star -- and, strangely, two of his three pairings with BFF Elizabeth Taylor (Raintree County and Suddenly Last Summer).

If you've been reading TFE for any length of time you know that he's my favorite actor. Find out why. And find out why I'm always pissed that Marlon Brando and James Dean get all the credit for reinventing acting in the 50s. It took all three of them to get the job done, and Monty came first.

Not all of his films are available on DVD so I'm particularly anxious to see Elia Kazan's Wild River (1960) -- not to be confused with the classic Howard Hawks western Red River (1948) which is an absolute must if you haven't seen it -- which has always eluded me. Patricia Bosworth, who wrote one of the famous Clift biographies, will be on hand to talk about the Best Picture of 1953, From Here To Eternity.


The series ends on March 25th with John Huston's The Misfits (1961) which is a must for any movie obsessive since it's both an amazing film and a crucial elegy for three of the greatest film stars of the 20th century: Marilyn Monroe (her last completed picture and unquestionably one of her best performances), Clark Gable (his last film) and Monty, who was running on fumes.

related post: Monty Got a Raw Deal (the blog-a-thon)

9 comments:

J.L said...

He is my favorite actor of all time. Haven't seen The Misfits sadly but I want very bad. His best performance are in "I, Confess" probably, well there's so much to choose from.

Arkaan said...

Wild River is amazing.

Anonymous said...

why don't you focus on FB Awards? I can't wait to see them!

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

It seems like an unforgivable omission to not have Suddenly Last Summer. I'll always love Katharine Hepburn a little more for spitting in (I believe it was) Mankiewicz's face after she finished shooting because of their treatment of Monty.

I'm weak I know but I still tear up when he comes on in Judgement of Nuremberg. Chilling. I hate when icons meet tragic ends.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

It seems like an unforgivable omission to not have Suddenly Last Summer. I'll always love Katharine Hepburn a little more for spitting in (I believe it was) Mankiewicz's face after she finished shooting because of their treatment of Monty.

I'm weak I know but I still tear up when he comes on in Judgement of Nuremberg. Chilling. I hate when icons meet tragic ends.

Jose said...

Things like this make me want to drop everything and move to NYC...
Anyway I second that statement about "Wild River". Kazan is my favorite director and the film is definitely one of his most underrated works. Jo Van Fleet is terrific in it!

Kristin Snouffer said...

I've seen all but Monty's last two films, Freud and The Defector, so I've very glad he's getting some due recognition with this film showcase. I smartly began taping his films as they came on the old AMC and now TCM, but somebody better release the rest of those DVDs soon!

Anyone who knows anything about classic film will tell you Monty came first ;0) And if anyone thinks there's some over acting going on in the classics, give 'em a dose of 'mincemeated' Monty as a dose of old school medicine!

I'm working on a series of reviews of his films now. Up next is Lonelyhearts. I don't expect the layman to appreciate my analysis, but a true film scholar will!

http://ithinkthereforeireview.blogspot.com/search/label/Montgomery%20Clift

GorgeousMonty said...

I will be there! I've been counting down to this for weeks now! I can't wait...I'll be at each film screening...so exciting!!

about MC said...

Well, his career was very short, it would to put 17 Montgomery Clift's filmes, not 11.

However, some of Monty is much!

sorry, my english is awful.