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THE MEN

Director: FRED ZINNEMANN

U.S.A.| 1950. BLACK AND WHITE. 85 MIN.


BRANDO IS TERRIFIC IN HIS FIRST FILM ROLE, PLAYING AN EMBITTERED WWII VETERAN WHO HAS BEEN LEFT A PARAPLEGIC.

A fine script by Carl Foreman combines with Fred Zinnemann’s characteristically subtle direction to transcend the simple social message for which producer Stanley Kramer was famous. Taking his cue from William Wyler’s The Best Years of Our Lives, Zinnemann adopts a clear-sighted and realistic approach to the plight of a group of men who struggle to come to terms with their disabilities. Brando was fully supportive of Zinnemann’s decision to use patients of a veterans’ hospital in some of the roles and prepared for his part by living with the patients for over three weeks. Brando’s very original use of hesitation and peculiar speech rhythms is ideal for reproducing the turbulent inner life of a troubled character.

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