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.Written by
Partway through production United Artists threatened to pull the plug because other Hecht-Lancaster films were over budget. According to Ernest Borgnine, the studio's accountants saved the film by pointing out that under new tax laws they had to complete Marty and show it at least once before they could write it off as a tax loss. 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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Ernest Borgnine is terrific as "Marty". A self-admitted "fat, ugly" thirty-something man who lives with his mother. The film is lovely in that it stars an admittedly unattractive person, and deals with his feelings of loneliness and insecurity. Mr. Borgnine doesn't just stumble into this performance; he is given the part of his lifetime, and gives it everything he's got, creating a marvelous simple, but complicated, character.
Now, I agree this is an excellent film, and I know, for the time, being single and middle-aged must have been devastating - but there is a very distracting flaw in this movie - Betsy Blair is no "dog" of a woman. I don't think, during any time, men would think of her as ugly. Ms. Blair is just not homely, and it does detract from an otherwise excellent script. Blair also has a job/profession; I would consider her a prime "catch" for most of the men in this movie. Blair does her best, though... you'll just have to imagine her as someone you'd have to give a man $5.00 to take home.
******** Marty (4/11/55) Delbert Mann ~ Ernest Borgnine, Betsy Blair, Esther Minciotti
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