Rotten Wednesday: Week 5 (bumped up)

Hello all.  As I mentioned before I will be missing from the Internet this weekend, so things are getting moved forward a little bit.  So savor the flavor of a tomato on Tuesday!  What does Rotten Tomatoes say about our movie for the week, On the Waterfront?
100%.  Bam, there it is.  That officially marks our second 100% film on the IMDB Quest.  Given the fact that’s it’s one of the top movies of all time, I suppose it’s not terribly surprising.  50 reviews is a small sample, too.  The audience reaction out of around 50,000 views says 94% enjoyed it.  I don’t consider this a disparity between the critics, since a score of 94 is about as high as you’ll ever see from the audience aggregate.  96% is, so far, the highest I’ve seen, and I’d be happy if you corrected me should I be wrong.

 

So audiences and critics are in agreement.  On the Waterfront is top tier and fantastic.  What details can we pull out about what to expect?  What makes this film so good?
Unfortunately, Rotten Tomatoes has not stored any written reviews from 1954, so the critical reception is most certainly retrospective.  All seem to come from around 2003 onward, so we can take the reviews with a bit of salt.

 

“Under Elia Kazan’s direction, Marlon Brando puts on a spectacular show, giving a fascinating, multi-faceted performance as the uneducated dock walloper and former pug, who is basically a softie with a special affection for his rooftop covey of pigeons and a neighborhood girl back from school.

Kazan does a penetrating job of staging the fireworks and the interspersing tender meetings between Brando and the girl. Latter is Eva Marie Saint, a newcomer to films who has appeared in television and the legiter, ‘Trip to Bountiful.’ Miss Saint, in sharp contrast with the robust people and settings of “Waterfront,” is fresh and delicate but with enough spirit to escape listlessness in her characterization.”

Variety Reviews

 

On the Waterfront is a great film for many reasons, but its most enduring asset may be the young Brando, whose incandescent acting style ushered in a new era of more naturalistic, less mannered acting. It’s a tribute to the almost unprecedented emotional power of Brando’s performance that although the character he plays here is among the screen’s least articulate and eloquent heroes, he has one of the best-known and most quoted bits of dialogue in movie history.”

Steven Greydanus, Decent Films Guide

 

So obviously a lot can be said for Brando’s performance, which is not a shock.

Rotten Tomatoes has raised my expectation and anticipation for the film a bit more!  It should be fun to check it out.

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About Zach

Zach works as a medical writer in Atlanta, GA. In his spare time, he likes to play video games and Dice Masters.
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