A Streetcar Named Desire

1951

Drama

29
IMDb Rating 8 10 91714

Synopsis


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Director

Cast

Marlon Brando as Stanley Kowalski
Vivien Leigh as Blanche DuBois
Kim Hunter as Stella Kowalski
Karl Malden as Harold 'Mitch' Mitchell
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1.02 GB
988*720
English
PG
23.976 fps
2hr 2 min
P/S 3 / 12
1.98 GB
1472*1072
English
PG
23.976 fps
2hr 2 min
P/S 1 / 18

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by dusted1 10 / 10

One of the Greatest

I had put off watching this video for sometime. I was afraid that I might be disappointed in this classic. Instead I was drawn into this marvelous film with its great Tennesse Williams' script.

Williams doesn't let any of his characters off. Brando's Stanley is a boorish, bullying, loudmouth. But he also possesses an extraordinary physical sexuality and also seems to be more than a little bit of a victim himself. Life has not been smooth for Stanley. No silver spoon here. Both his wife and sister-in-law put him down as a crude "Polack" and other variations on that theme. Not that there isn't some obvious truth to their put downs. However, truly nice people (as opposed to "nice" people) do not engage in such speech. There's also the table scene where Stanley is eating chicken and receives a harsh verbal reprimand from Stella. Whereupon he sees the tactics of class shame being used and he proceeds to blow up in a very physical and blue collar fashion. Stanley sexually assaults Blanche at he end of the film. Blanche was already hearing voices by this time in the film, and this act of aggression pushes her over the edge. Brando's performance was really superb.

Hunter's Stella is by far the most likeable character of the major 3 players. She's honest, kind, sexy, and very much in love with Stanley--despite his obvious faults. The depiction of the physical love and lust between Stanley and Stella is classic. She also loves her sister and wants what's best for her. She and Blanche collude to some extent against Stanley which provides much of the film's strongest tensions. Stella is financially and sexually/emotionally dependent on Stanley, but she's also a strong character in her own right. We don't really know for sure if she'll go back to Stanley at the end of the film after the baby and the sexual aggression against Blanche. We do know that Stanley for all his macho swagger is extremely emotionally dependent on her.

Vivien Leigh's character was a revelation. I thought the most brilliant moments in the film were towards the end when her character was speaking. I didn't really think Leigh's accent was all that great, but hey, when you can act like that who cares? Blanche is a victim, but Blanche is anything but innocent. She was having sex with one of her high school English lit students back in Mississippi. Naturally, the small town locals did not take a shine to such behavior. Also, she was more than just a bit on the promiscuous side for a high school teacher in mid-century small town America. It's not surprising that she got chased out of her small town teaching job. There's also the touching scene where she asks for and gets a kiss from the boy who is collecting for the newspaper. It's all tied in to her love for the boy who killed himself over her when she was 16. She said some very cruel words to him about being weak which led to the boy's suicide. She's not an innocent--by any means. The sexual attraction between Stanley and her is noticeable in a number of scenes. And yet for all her pretentiousness, lies, and putting on airs, the audience is drawn to her. Her fading beauty, vulnerability, and weakness can hardly help but elicit a sympathetic response. Blanche is the human condition writ large. In some respects there is some of Blanche in all of us: hidden ugliness from the past, both emotional and sexual neediness, and just plain old human weakness. I think Leigh's performance was really brilliant. And thank God for Tennnessee Williams and his ability to portray people more as we are than as we would like to be.

I do agree with at least one of the previous viewers that the term "nymphomaniac" seems somewhat out-of-date in describing Blanche. Blanche uses sex in a promiscuous fashion to escape from her loneliness. I think this is the same pathology that both men and women engage in when having "casual--such a strange contradiction in terms--sex". I certainly don't think that Williams saw her as either a "nympho" or a "slut". Rather, just a lonely, tortured individual.

Reviewed by Mayesgwtw39 10 / 10

Vivien Leigh Gives One of Cinema's Greatest Performances

Tennessee Williams himself wrote of Vivien Leigh"s performance in "Streetcar Named Desire": "She brought everything I intended to the role and even much more than I had dared dream of".

Brando is wonderful as Stanley Kowalski, but the new viewers to the film seem to come away with the haunting greatness of Vivien Leigh in what is one of the most harrowing and shattering pieces of acting ever committed to film.

Although some have expressed regret that Jessica Tandy did not repeat her stage performance, it is probably good to note that her husband Hume Cronyn and Elia Kazan (the director of the film and play) both never felt that Tandy quite got the character right. If you listen to the radio performance of extracted scenes that Tandy gave on the occasion of the Pulitzer Prize award, it will reenforce the perfection of Leigh's inflections and innate understanding of the role. This inner and complete understanding is what Brando praises Leigh for in his autobiography. He agrees that she plays this Hamlet of female roles better than anyone because he felt she was quite like the character...sadly.

If anyone is interested in great acting check out "Streetcar" for Vivien Leigh's Academy Award winning performance. The supporting cast is outstanding from Kim Hunter and Karl Malden (both Oscar winners for the film)to, of course, the iconographic T-shirt-torn Brando.

Reviewed by JFHunt 10 / 10

Hey Stella.....STELLA!

I often asked myself this question with mixed responses. Did Brando make Streetcar great? Or was he just great in it?

Vivien Leigh is simply haunting and never not shocking. There is more going on there than just a performance. She appears out of herself and hovering ever so softly above. As for the rumored mental illnesses, I can only speculate. I do know for sure that her visualization of Blanche DuBois is the single best performance by an actress I've seen. Well that might not mean much, but I've seen a lot of movies.

Brando made On the Waterfront a classic, but Leigh made Streetcar unforgettable. I always felt like it was a continuation from her most timeless role as Scarlett O'Hara in Gone with the Wind. Like what would have happened to Scarlett, if she was allowed to grow old. Maybe I'm just crazy. But I think the billing says it all; Vivien Leigh, Marlon Brando, Kim Hunter, Karl Malden. I don't think you could dream up a finer cast. Brando might have been the sexiest thing alive, but it's obvious that Leigh made this film great with some memorable help from some movie icons.

Brando may have sent an Indian to receive his second Oscar, but Leigh used her second as a doorstop to her bathroom.

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