Containing Multitudes Since 2004
Been there, done that. I think I had the same look on my face as Monty - he sold me on this scene.
Still one of my favorite roles of all time..."a man don't go his own way, he's nothing" Great rare shot...thanks to Kimberly for posting it and the others
I love Clift but it has to be said that both in From Here To Eternity and Red River his insbility to punch convincingly is inescapable. What interests me about "...Eternity" is how Clift's charisma derail the film's ideal message. Burt Lancaster's character is the last man standing able to, kind of, respect Prewitt and DiMaggio (so not a bully) but still military (meaning proper American) through and through so therefore should be the hero yet somehow he proves less memorable and seductive than Clift/Prewitt's doomed,handsome, nihilism.
Lancaster was stuck with being the eternal sarge - the real glue in any army being the the noncoms - he was the stand-up guy who ends up as the the only one who knew what the hell was going on, a typical SNAFU result. Clift's part was too overpowering for any hanky-panky Kerr and Lancaster might care to generate for most folks today; however, this was not the case when it was first released - the beach scene was the ne-plus-ultra of forbidden romance back then.
Vanwall, that scene with Lancaster and Kerr on the beach is still considered to be a classic movie moment. Clift was never an "overpowering" actor, which is one of the main reasons that today's audiences don't even know who he is, as compared with Brando and Dean. Critics called him "the blank-stare-perplexed" actor, as he tended to underplay.As for Clift's inability to punch, it was worked into the script of "Eternity" as his reluctance to fight. And he was doubled effectively as the soldiers crowded during his fistfight with the sergeant. Many felt that this made the scene more powerful. It dovetailed with Prewitt's reluctane to fight, not just because he was "a guy who went his own way" but because he blinded a man in the ring and was still stricken with remorse.
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