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Stuck as the last of six children at home with an overbearing Italian mother, the only child still unmarried, 34 year old socially awkward Bronx butcher Marty faces middle age with no prospects of marriage, and he faces permanent bachelorhood. But when he is goaded by his mother into going to the Stardust Ballroom one Saturday night, Marty unexpectedly meets Clara, a lonely teacher. Suddenly, Marty's future seems bright. Winner of Best Picture of 1955, Best Adapted Screenplay for Paddy Chayefsky, Best Director for Delbert Mann, and Best Actor for Ernest Borgnine. Written by
Paddy Chayefsky: The character of Leo, who appears in the back of the car when Marty is approached by his friends to make up the pair for the "odd squirrel" they have with them. According to Delbert Mann, Chayefsky (who was once a moderately renowned stage actor) was recruited for the very visually obscured part solely to save the time and money of hiring an extra. According to Chayefsky, for his three lines he was required to rejoin the actor's union, which required dues of $140. He recalled the role as paying about $67. See more »
When Marty and Clara are walking on the street on Saturday night, a woman approaches a "No Parking" sign, turns and waves to the camera. See more »
Ma, sooner or later, there comes a point in a man's life when he's gotta face some facts. And one fact I gotta face is that, whatever it is that women like, I ain't got it.
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Proof That a Picture Doesn't Need SPFX - It needs great Actors
Okay, so I'm in the Business. I don't believe this movie could get made today except as an art house film. Its beauty lies in its simplicity. Starting with a terrific script by Chayefskey (arguably one of the five best playrights of the 20th century), this movie eschews every that's big about motion pictures for a story about Everman who didn't have a date on Saturday night. Rod Steiger first performed the role on television. It won a number of Emmys. "Opened up" for the silver screen, it retains the intimacy of its characters. Ernest Borgnine has probably been in 100 movies, but this was his shining moment. He breathes live into the hapless Bronx Butcher whose soul longs for love. When he gives his "I'm gonna get down on my knees..." speech, the tears begin to flow. Why? Because in our heart of hearts, each of us feels the need for love and self validation. Marty doesn't need special effects or action sequences. Marty is in a class by itself. Had it never been made we would have all missed an opportunity to look inside ourselves. Maybe in this day and age, with all our CGI and Virtual Reality, we need another Marty, to remind us who we really are.
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