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On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront(1954)

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  • Waterlogged

    • Jay Allen
    • 3/25/18

    Brando's New York style bathos is considered brilliant by some, but not by me. The film was directed by turncoat Kazan. This doesn't make up for it. To see Brando at his true genius catch him "Burn!". Now that is brilliant.

  • The Other Side of the Story

    • Rebecca Purcell
    • 2/27/18

    This is not exactly a review. It is more deserved call out.In TCM's promo for this film we hear several men talking about the seminal, male performances, and I think it is Turturro who says this movie is popular with women because it is romantic. Maybe women love the movie for the superb acting and directing. Maybe this film is popular with women because Eva Marie Saint portrays a captivating, complex and nuanced character we rarely ever see. And maybe women love this film because Brando portrays vulnerability in a way we rarely ever see.There is a reason this movie is one of the all time greats - it is a fantastic film. Kazan is an extraordinary director, Brando is stunning, but for this one moment I would like to call out and recognize the performance of Eva Marie Saint. Her role is subtle... her performance is a knock-out. Saint literally holds, and holds-up, the role of empathy, honor, and heart as a dynamic foil to all of the blocked, masculine egos that dominate every scene. She does this while simultaneously conveying a core of tangible, inner strength. We can feel the polarity in almost every moment she is on screen. Saint is a critical oasis of humanity amidst a maelstrom of butting heads and egos; without her masterful performance much of the beauty of this films would have been lost.

  • say the magic word.

    • a.morris
    • 2/25/18

    Kazan.. should be the captain marvel of film history.. but for a lot of people.. seems to be more like duckman.

  • Sink or Swim On the Waterfront

    • Clichae,H.A.
    • 8/5/16

    It was fitting to watch this movie on the big screen in a theatre. The Brandon. Malden, & even Steiger characters portrayed real men- an almost extinct species today. Kazan shared in this manhood as he identified those in Hollywood who sympathized with the KGB, the execution cellars, & the martyring of millions of Christians in the gulag. There is a certain non-politician running for a certain office in a certain nation who is confronting the same soothing serpent tongues emanating from those 'elected' leaders of a certain gangster government who articulate & enforce a similar regime- are there enough men who have the guts to vote this one into office?!

  • Talent does not come easily.

    • 2/18/16

    Truman Capote once said.........actors are "stupid people, they are not intelligent". He specifically cited Marlon Brando and what he described as (Brando's) bizarre causes. I must say I'm paraphrasing somewhat. That may be true. If you are describing Brando the crusader. He may very well have been somewhat ignorant on those counts. But as an actor and in his preparation and in his presentation. Brando is not only intelligent he is of genius proportions. In his recently released recordings he (Brando) describes the importance of an Actor's face in "film acting". And how an actor must understand how his profile and the characteristics of his countenance and each facial expression comes across on the screen. The man understood "preparation" to the fullest and studied it manically. In ON THE WATERFRONT,,,,,,,,,,,you can actually smell the docks, feel the docks and believe the docks and the life of a dock worker. Also one understands the trials and tribulations of a boxer in the performance of Brando. It is truly a creation beyond anything that came before it.

  • On The Waterfront

    • Michael Whitty
    • 1/11/16

    Marlon Brando as a union worker on the New York waterfront has to decide about informing on the legal side of gangsters affecting his union. As a movie of social concern "On the Waterfront" is one of the best. Employees who want to inform walk a tightrope and could be disciplined or even killed. This black-and-white classic concentrates on its theme power as Terry Maloy gets his advice from his priest and girl friend. Working men and the mob that infiltrates their workplace has been brought to focus by this Academy Award movie as the presence of one's conscience factors in.

  • Impressed

    • robb
    • 6/7/14

    Two movie from my youth affected my life for ever after. "On the Waterfront" and "Rebel Without A Cause".

  • Stunning and memorable

    • Jayme
    • 6/6/14

    I've seen On the Waterfront at least four times, and I can hear the musical score so clearly - it's so evocative, and like the score of To Kill a Mockingbird, it is integral to the film. Composed by none other than Leonard Bernstein!

  • On the Waterfront

    • John
    • 8/2/13

    Overall-5/5Lead Performers-5/5Supporting Cast-5/5Director-5/5Score-5/5Titles-3/5Screenplay-5/5Cinematography-5/5Importance-4/5Recommendation for fans of the genre-4/5

  • Brando's best!

    • RedRain
    • 3/19/13

    There are few films that I cannot watch again and again and this is one of them. Twice was more than I should have watched. The subject matter, from a true expose in NYC, and its savage approach to show the truth, is too much for me to witness over and over. There is no doubt, however, that this film marked a change in all actors' approach to their craft. Brando's performance is unmatched and there is a reason this film has never been remade and it is that nobody else could possibly come close to Brando's powerful emotions as Terry Malloy. There are superb supportive performances, the best probably by Karl Malden, but this is Brando's film throughout.

  • Waterfront

    • I_Fortuna
    • 2/23/13

    This is the first time I have seen this film. How I missed it before I don't know. I have to honestly say that I have never seen a more heartfelt performance as I saw in Marlon Brando in On the Waterfront. I have never gotten the feeling before from any performance that I did while watching him in this movie. It is no surprise to me now how his peers look upon him with such admiration. The rest of the cast was certainly terrific but Brando has outshined many a good actor for years to come in this performance in my opinion. I used to like him and now I am blown away by him.

  • marlon brando

    • steven
    • 2/20/13

    Marlon Brando gave 3 landmark performances- as Stanley Kowalski in " Streetcar"; Terry Malloy in " On the Warefront" and Vito Carleone in " The Godfather". Can you argue that wehn at his best, he is the greatest actor who ever lived?

  • A nod to the longshoremen...

    • ggtx785
    • 2/18/13

    Whether or not you agree with Elia Kazan's nod to his decision to "name names," this masterpiece deserves its acclaim in its own right. Brando just doesn't get better than this. Lee J. Cobb and Karl Malden also deliver knockout performances. But it's the real-life longshoremen who render this work whole--these untrained actors were literally committing their life stories to posterity in the making of this film. "On the Waterfront" simply isn't an achievement without them.

  • On the Waterfront

    • Dashiell Barnes
    • 7/6/12

    Drama from Kazan that came to justify his testimonies to HUAC. Unquestionably the focus of the film is the powerhouse performance from Brando, who won his first Academy Award. Strong supporting work from Cobb, Malden & Stieger who were nominated & Saint who gives an Oscar-winning performance. Kazan's direction is a perfect combination with Schulberg's screenplay, both of which won, other honours were for art direction, editing & cinematography. An overall perfect film from the 50's. I give it a 5/5.

  • teen years

    • rob
    • 3/14/12

    This movie and "Rebel Without A Cause" are by far the two most memorable movies of my teenage years.

  • On the waterfront

    • Tom
    • 8/2/11

    ***** Marlon Brando's acting in this film is the best piece of acting ever.

  • On the Waterfront (1954)

    • Jeff
    • 6/28/11

    When people think of Marlon Brando, they usually think of his greatest performance as Don Vito Corleone in The Godfather (1972). However, Brando had another Oscar winning performance, as Terry Malloy in this film. The film is about how Terry Malloy (Brando) tries to stand up against the mob. Brando is aided with great performances by Rod Steiger, Karl Malden, Eva Marie Saint, and Lee J. Cobb who were all Oscar nominated. These performances bolstered this film. This was Elia Kazan's best movie and it is definitely helpful that it has a great screenplay. Contrary to its main character, this film is a contender as a classic.

  • on the waterfront

    • steven king
    • 2/25/11

    Marlon Brando is my favorite actor and I believe that his performance in this movie represents a true landmarkn the American cinema. His charisma and screen presence is so magnetic, unlike any other actor that I have seen. I can understand how other actors could watch him in this movie and just go: "WOW." The ensemble of actors in this movie, from Ros Stiger to Lee J. Cobb to Karl Malden to Eva Marie Saint to Leif Erikson and their performances the others make this an unforgettable movie experience. I beileive this movie represented the personification of the so called "Method" school of acting at its finest. I also believe that 'The Godfather' marked a similar high water mark displaying the very best of the "Method" school some 20 years later. I believe it is no coincidence that Brando headed up that cast also.

  • Wow.

    • GenevieveRose
    • 2/10/10

    The accomplishments of this film cannot be expressed in words. Magnificent, raw, blue-collar, down in the dirt, and utterly REAL. This is a life story that tells the tale of those of us down here who are not in the money and really must live. This is Marlon Brando's GREATEST role, and Eva Marie Saint is flawless and unsurpassed in her role. Talk about a great, intense love story!And don't forget Karl Malden as the courageous, down-to-earth, fighting-Irish priest Father Barry who reminds us of the daily crucifixitions that take place all around us.

  • On the Waterfront

    • Pat Turman
    • 2/10/10

    What makes a great move? Great acting? Great direction? Likeable stars? State-of-the-art special effects? I submit that all great movies have one thing in common: a great story. 'On the Waterfront' has to be one of the greatest movies ever made simply because it is a well told story about characters we learn to care about. Not a single frame is wasted as momentum builds towards a riveting and suspenseful climax. From a storytelling point of view, it is a perfect movie.

  • Proved A Point

    • Minky
    • 12/29/09

    Elia Kazan proved a point and that is, that you can be anti-conservative or anti-Christian or even an anti-American but it is a definite no, no to be an anti- communist in Hollywood.

  • Annoyance

    • Jack The Hat
    • 12/29/09

    It is not hard to figure out the Hollywood elites annoyance with this film. The message states very cleary the union in the film represents the communist influnence in Hollywood and Terry (Marlin Brandow) is the one who is taken a stance against it.

  • Two questions...

    • Roger Rettig
    • 12/29/09

    Probably my favourite film of all time...WHY does Pat Hingle never get a credit for his (admittedly small) role as the bartender who talks 'boxing' with Malloy?Whatever happened to that tract that appeared in the credits - a rolling sequence that talks of 'right-thinking men... (who) stand up against tyranny...', etc, etc.When I saw this film (frequently at the Classic Cinema chain in London on re-runs) this item was a part of the film. However - I've never seen it since on TV showings. Was it removed, I wonder, because it was seen as Kazan's personal addition and an attempt to defuse criticism of his stand against 'anti-American activities'?It was either at the very beginning or at the very end of the movie; I can't now remember. Anyone else?

  • On the Waterfront (1954)

    • Jay Higgins
    • 9/17/09

    The performances in the film are incredible, and from everyone in the cast. They are all remarkable. Intense direction from Elia Kazan, very well edited and an outstanding screenplay. Superb character development, well photographed. A very powerful and moving film.

  • One Of The Best Dramas Of The 50's

    • Bruce Reber
    • 6/16/09

    "On The Waterfront" has to be one of the most powerful films ever made. It features a great cast, headlined by Marlon Brando's Oscar-winning performance as ex-boxer longshoreman Terry Malloy, Rod Steiger as his mobster brother Charley, Lee J. Cobb as docks mob boss Johnny Friendly, Karl Malden as the priest trying to get Terry and the other longshoremen to fight the mob, and Eva Marie Saint as the sister of Terry's friend who got killed. Elia Kazan directs maybe his best film ever, and there has been speculation that "On The Waterfront" reflects his experiences with being forced to give the names of his colleagues who were Communists or suspected of being Communists before HUAC so that he could continue to work in Hollywood. Because of that Kazan was hated by those he had betrayed, the same as Terry Malloy was in the film for testifying before the Waterfront Crime Commission and "doing the right thing".I have the DVD, but it's the fullscreen version and not the letterbox aired on TCM. Four Stars!!!


    • ASHLEY
    • 4/12/09


  • masterpiece

    • Brando4ever
    • 8/11/07

    Beautiful, wonderful film. A true classic masterpiece. Great story with a beautiful, tender love story.

  • one of the greatest cienamatic masterpieces.

    • michael
    • 7/19/07

    A brilliant study of human redemption.With marlon brando in top form his performance is more than likely the greatest performances of all time young actors need to take notes. Great supporting work to especially that of Karl marlden which tries to stop marlon from commiting a crime. This is a keeper.

  • My (other) favorite movie

    • broadwayphantom
    • 5/18/07

    I believe that 99 % of all the components of this film were brilliantly presented:the score (Bernstein: what an enthralling [musical]introductory to the film), the direction (Kazan: with a personal poignance), the leading actors (...Brando...need I say more?), the supporting actors (Well, I should: Malden, Cobb, Saint, Steiger {all gave a profound/stirring performances}), the screenplay (several immortal lines ["I coulda been a contender..."]), etc. All and all, this film is a masterpeice (and it rightly deserved every Oscar it garnered)!

  • The dawn of a new era in acting

    • Dan
    • 5/2/07

    The aspect ratio of 1.85:1 works for me in this powerful film. What was the big deal of it not shot in Cinemascope, since they could've done it in that way. The film wasn't in color either, but does it really matter. Critics everywere hail it as one of the top 100 films of all time. Brando gives a riveting and all too real performance that set new standards with great actors of today. Watching this film makes you really care for his character... .

  • Not Widescreen

    • Max Brinck
    • 3/31/07

    This film was supposedly shot at a ratio of 1.33:1, or so says the DVD case. So, the next question is why TCM imposed a masked picture @ approximately 1.85:1. Some of the original image might have been sacrificed.This is not uncommon practice and might be done for the sake of today's widescreen displays. It would be interesting if TCM would tell its viewers what the original aspect ratio was and what, if any modifications have been made. (For any of its films, where the aspect ratio might be in question). As for the film itself, enough superlatives have been showered on this masterpiece. Suffice to say, it simply must remain in the top ten all-time greatest American films.

  • In regards to widescreen comment

    • Tracy
    • 11/20/06

    Somebody commented on the movie being shown in widescreen format on TCM...Yes, it's a 1954 movie, and it was shot in a "flat" format (as opposed to Cinemascope) but that still means it can have an 1.85:1 aspect ratio, like most movies today that are not shot in anamorphic 'scope.It's a milder form of letterboxing (with 1.85:1 movies) than with Cinemascope ones, but it still works.

  • Best Movie...with a Dramatic Punch

    • Sam Wilson
    • 3/13/06

    I saw On The Waterfront for the first time last year and I loved it! Marlon Brando is my hero in that movie! I've watched the whole movie and the ending was so dramatic. The Contender scene is definitely my fave. This dramatic classic tells a story about an ex-boxer, Terry Malloy, who struggles to stand up against the corruptive union bosses, with a help of his dead man's girlfriend, Edie Doyle, and a tough priest, Father Barry. This movie won 8 Oscars for Best Director, Best Supporting Actress, Best Actor, and Best Picture. I give it 10 out of 10!


    • 2/12/06


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