Title Sound Track
“You may be a one eyed jack around here,
but I’ve seen the other side of your face.”
come a little bit closer / jay and the americans
me and my uncle / distant sons
Did the camera like this guy?
A combination of Talent, Charisma, and Sex Appeal is hard to come by.
And when it is found, a silent prayer goes out:
“God, don’t let him screw it up.”
Like a Roman God, by Jove!
mireille-mathieu / canta-en-espac3a3c2b1ol-la-paloma
March 22, 1912 – July 1, 2009
Malden also previously starred with Brando in
A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
On the Waterfront (1954)
Pickens and Johnson
“Pickens and Johnson”? Sounds like a Law Firm or something. Well, Slim Pickens and Ben Johnson ARE indeed members of a unique and small fraternity: Real Cowboys who became Westerns Movie Stars. There would definitely be a small group around that campfire. And both of them had major parts in One-Eyed Jacks.
And they had yet another distinction: they’ve both been in so many Westerns that it would be pretty well impossible to list them all here.
Wikipedia: “Born, Louis Burton Lindley, Jr. (June 29, 1919 – December 8, 1983), known by the stage name Slim Pickens, was an American rodeo performer and film and television actor who epitomized the profane, tough, sardonic cowboy, but who is (possibly) best remembered for his comic roles, notably in Dr. Strangelove and Blazing Saddles.
Pickens was an excellent rider from age 4. After graduating from High School he joined the rodeo. He was told that working in the rodeo would be “slim pickings” (very little money), giving him his name, but he did well and eventually became a well-known rodeo clown.
After twenty years on the rodeo circuit, his distinctive Oklahoma-Texas drawl (even though he was a lifelong Californian), his wide eyes and moon face and strong physical presence gained him a role in the western film, Rocky Mountain (1950) starring Errol Flynn. He appeared in many more Westerns, playing both villains and comic sidekicks to the likes of Rex Allen, John Wayne, Steve McQueen, … many many other Stars.”
Men like Richard Farnsworth, Slim Pickens and Ben Johnson were all legitimate cowboys and horsemen who got lassoed into Stunt work. Then via fluke, luck or Gift of God – plus some undeniable Charisma – became well known Actors/Stars.
Surely none of ’em would have thought less of themselves – or their lives – if they had stayed in the esteemed profession of Cowboy/Horsemen/Stunt work.
This being said, the fraternity of Stunt Artists has always somewhat of a shadow industry/profession in film making. We know these Stunt guys (and gals) are there – (Stunt Artists work in nearly every film and and in many TV shows) – but Movie Makers shine as little light on these necessary Artists as possible. Why? Because they don’t want to spoil the grand illusion that it really isn’t Robert Redford and Paul Newman jumping off that cliff – or John Wayne smashing through that bar room window – not to mention the thousand of other perilous acrobatics we witness in nearly every movie – and have been for a long, long time.
Yet the respect accorded Stunt Artists is also evident – as when Stars perform their own stunts – it is always well publicized as a daring (if not foolhardy) feat – discouraged by those who fund the films.
10 of Slim’s Best
Roy Rogers & Sons Of The Pioneers – Tumbling Tumbleweeds
Wikipedia: “Ben “Son” Johnson, Jr. (June 13, 1918 – April 8, 1996) was an American stuntman, world champion rodeo cowboy and actor. The son of a rancher, Johnson arrived in Hollywood to deliver a consignment of horses for a film. He did stunt double work for several years before breaking into acting through the good offices of John Ford. Tall and laconic, Johnson brought further authenticity to many roles in Westerns with his extraordinary horsemanship. An elegiac portrayal of a former cowboy theatre owner in the 50’s coming of age drama, The Last Picture Show, won Johnson the 1971 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He operated a horse breeding farm throughout his career. Although he said he had succeeded by sticking to what he knew, shrewd real estate investments made Johnson worth an estimated 100 million dollars by his latter years.
Johnson was born in Foraker, Oklahoma, on the Osage Indian Reservation, of Irish and Cherokee ancestry, the son of Ollie Susan (née Workmon) and Ben Johnson, Sr. His father was a rancher and rodeo champion in Osage County. Throughout his life Johnson was drawn to the rodeos and horse breeding of his early years. In 1953 he took a break from well paid film work to compete in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, becoming Team Roping World Champion although he only broke even financially that year. Johnson was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in 1973.
Johnson’s 1941 marriage to Carol Elaine Jones lasted until her death on March 27, 1994, they had no children. Jones was the daughter of noted Hollywood horse wrangler Clarence “Fat” Jones.
“I grew up on a ranch and I know livestock, so I like working in Westerns. All my life I’ve been afraid of failure. To avoid it, I’ve stuck with doing things I know how to do, and it’s made me a good living.”
You done good Ben.
One-Eyed Jacks (1961) Restored
Brando rides again in restored Classic
One-Eyed Jacks / http://www.nziff.co.nz/2016/auckland/one-eyed-jacks/
Directed by Marlon Brando Retro
A singular Western rightfully restored for the big screen, Marlon Brando’s sole directorial effort and legendary film maudit arrives fresh from its enthusiastic reappraisal at Cannes.
Famously over-budget and severely trimmed by the studio, Marlon Brando’s sole foray into direction was a box office flop that remains a psychologically fascinating, visually stunning and too-seldom-seen entry into the Western genre. This stunning restoration by Universal Pictures and The Film Foundation was supervised by Steven Spielberg and Martin Scorsese. It comes to festival screens direct from its unveiling at Cannes.
“One-Eyed Jacks was actually the last time Brando acted out of true commitment, an uncynical passion for the material, and he gives one of his best performances as the outlaw betrayed by a friend (Karl Malden), seeking vengeance and finding love with the villain’s stepdaughter. His direction is perceptive and effective – all the actors are uniformly excellent – evoking especially fine work from the newcomers, notably Pina Pellicer as the young woman who falls for him. Katy Jurado is fine as her mother; Malden, always good, is superbly ambiguous here, and Ben Johnson and Slim Pickens are wonderfully authentic.” — Peter Bogdanovich, Indiewire
“Fascinating to see Brando directing this revenge Western exactly… as he acts, so that the whole movie smoulders in a manner that is mean, moody and magnificent… The Freudian intentions lurking in the character conflicts and the card symbolism, the homosexual and Oedipal intimations, are underpinned by the extraordinary settings… The result, laced with some fine traditional sequences and stretches of masochistic violence, is a Western of remarkable though sometimes muddled power.” — Tom Milne, Time Out
“You may be a one-eyed jack around here,
but I’ve seen the other side of your face.”
Left holding the bag by fellow bank robber Karl Malden, Marlon Brando’s Rio emerges from five years of rat-counting in the Sonoma pen, only to find his old buddy now a respected lawman, complete with wife Katy Jurado (High Noon) and step-daughter Pina Pellicer (the Mexican actress in a heartbreaking performance as Rio’s love interest, underlined by her suicide within four years). Brando’s only directorial effort was the Heaven’s Gate of its day, complete with firing of initial director Stanley Kubrick and co-scenarist Sam Peckinpah, millions of dollars in cost overruns, and a first cut running to five hours. Away from the hoopla, it can now be seen as a fresh approach to genre clichés; with numerous on-set improvisations; one of the great screen insults (“You scumsucking pig!”); and rare for a Western: seaside scenes, shot near Monterey. 4K DCP restoration. “What is extraordinary about it is that it proceeds in two contrasting styles. One is hard and realistic; the other is romantic and lush… as if it had been directed jointly by John Huston and Raoul Walsh.” – Bosley Crowther, The New York Times. “The most memorable scenes have a fierce masochistic intensity, as if Brando were taking the opportunity to punish himself for some unknown crime. The bizarre action is set off by the classic Hollywood iconography of the western landscape (photographed by Charles Lang).” – Dave Kehr. “The Freudian intentions lurking in the character conflicts and the card symbolism, the homosexual and Oedipal intimations, are underpinned by the extraordinary settings… with waves crashing portentously in the background, so that nature echoes the Romantic agony of a hero much given to brooding in corners or gazing out into space shrouded in his Byronic cape. The result is a Western of remarkable though sometimes muddled power.” – Tom Milne, Time Out (London).