On the Waterfront
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Marlon Brando gives one of the screen's most electrifying performances as Best Actor in this 1954 Academy Award(r) winner for Best Film. Ex-fighter Terry Malloy (Brando) could have been a contender butnow toils for boss Johnny Friendly (Lee J. Cobb) on the gang-ridden waterfront. Terry is guilt-stricken, however, when he lures a rebellious worker to his death. But it takes the love of Edie Doyle (Eva Marie Saint), the dead man's sister, to show Terry how low he has fallen. When his crooked brother Charley the Gent (Rod Steiger) is brutally murdered for refusing to kill him, Terry battles to crush Friendly's underworld empire. Directed by Elia Kazan (A Streetcar Named Desire) and written by Budd Schulberg (What Makes Sammy Run?), this unforgettable drama about Terry's redemption is among the most acclaimed of all films.
- Exclusive Featurette: "CONTENDER-Mastering the Method"
- Elia Kazan Interview
- Vintage Photo Gallery
- Talent Files (Elia Kazan, Writer Budd Schulberg, Marlon Brando, Rod Steiger Karl Malden, Lee J. Cobb and Eva Marie Saint)
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According to different sources, during the filming Brando was contracted to work only until 4 pm, because he had to keep his appointments with a psychiatrist who he was seeing at the time. Brando's mother was on a death bed at the time of filming and he was trying to cope with the trauma. She passed away three weeks after the release of the film.
Sony's 4K remaster of the film is brought to Blu-ray by Criterion, who avoid controversy by presenting the film in 3 equally valid aspect ratios. I personally prefer the 1.66:1 presentation on disc 1 which seems to be a good middle ground between the taller 1.33:1 and wider 1.85:1 presentations. The video quality is detailed, film-like and is a truly beautiful presentation of the film. The uncompressed PCM audio reproduces the dialogue and Leonard Bernstein's great score with great clarity.
Criterion has put together one of their strongest supplemental packages ever for this film. The Blu-ray set includes a commentary (from the older DVD), new interviews with Martin Scorsese, Kent Jones, actors Eva Marie Saint and Thomas Hanley, and historians, several documentaries, and much more. It's an informative set of extras that covers every aspect of the film.