Elia Kazan FIlms
Elia Kazan’s On the Waterfront (1954), with its incendiary performance from Marlon Brando, is the most feted film here. It is a wrenching tale of union violence and mob manipulation set in a New Jersey dockyard. Two further Kazan films feature – the darkly comic Baby Doll (1956) with its controversially sensual performance from Caroll Baker, and Wild River (1960), which explores the complexities of a rapidly changing rural America.
Other Films in the Series
Caroll Baker again takes the lead in Something Wild (1961), directed by her then-husband Jack Garfein. Critics are divided on the film’s depiction of rape and its aftermath, but united in praise of its jagged, almost expressionist cinematography. The Strange One (1957) examines the moral implications of a lie within a military school, while The Men (1950) – Brando’s debut – follows an injured officer adapting to society. The Breaking Point (1950) adapts a Hemingway novel, and The Member of the Wedding (1946) is based on one of Carson McCullers’ masterpieces.
The Big Knife (1955) and Edge of the City (1957) are both exemplary works of film noir. The former tracks the disintegration of a Hollywood’s actor’s life, while the latter – starring Sidney Poitier and a young John Cassavettes – looks at race relations among white-collar communities. Bus Stop (1956) is Marilyn Monroe’s flirtation with the method acting techniques, and boasts one of her finest performances. The season is rounded out with two sports films, the baseball biopic Fear Strikes Out (1957) and influential boxing drama Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956).
|What||Birth of the Method: The Revolution in American Acting, BFI|
|Where||BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road, Southbank, London, SE1 8XT | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Waterloo (underground)|
25 Oct 14 – 30 Nov 14, various - earliest 4.10pm, latest 8.40pm
|Website||Click here to book via the BFI’s website:|