The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

Artists in Action #273


Montgomery Clift gets medicated
(photo by Stanley Kubrick)

7 comments :

Vanwall said...

Jesus, that's creepy.

Jeremy Richey said...

Such an incredible shot and I just recently found out that Kubrick was the photographer...

mernitman said...

Looks like just another day in my little office...

Testify said...

Am I the only one who thinks this is pantomime? The eyes seem a little too clear,the hand a little too elegant? Thanx for all the Monty pics though!

Tom Sutpen said...

Am I the only one who thinks this is pantomime? The eyes seem a little too clear,the hand a little too elegant?

Entirely possible. It was part of an article for one of the big photo weeklies of the time, Look magazine, and in that realm (especially when covering a celebrity) a degree of staging was not unknown. Could be that Kubrick asked him how he spent an evening at home and, considering Clift's sense of humor (always self-deprecating), he snapped into that pose instinctively.

Vanwall said...

Ah. Many an evening have I spent in just such repose. I thought it was amazing Clift did too - shoulda known it was just a career-boosting photo op.

Tommy O'C said...

Such umbrage at a "staged" photo. Clift grabbed one of many bottles within reach (not to mention a pharmacy's worth of prescription meds that were more info than Look's audience needed).

It's a portent of man who'd shortly become what Actors Studio cofounder Bobby Lewis called "the slowest suicide in show business."

But you all see the superficial and not the real subtext.