What movie was jack nicholson and marlon brando in
m. night shyamalan’s new thriller old takes place on a mysterious beach where people age rapidly. but when a character descends into madness, it’s not the beach that haunts him. he’s obsessed with something he can’t remember: what movie did jack nicholson and marlon brando star in? “jack nicholson! marlon brando!” The man, played by Rufus Sewell, laments. and unless a western fanatic (like me) was sitting in the movies with you yelling “missouri breaks!” you may be asking yourself the same question.
In an interview with fox 5 washington dc, director m. night shyamalan revealed the purpose of invoking missouri breakouts in his latest horror movie. Instead of making a cinematic allusion, it turns out that the choice was quite personal:
“I’ve never seen it…it’s from my dad [dr. nelliyattu c. shyamalan], who actually has some dementia, and he kept talking about jack nicholson and marlon brando, this movie they were in. and I was like, ‘Dad, I’ve never seen it.’ and he’s like, ‘jack nicholson! marlon brando!’ and he kept talking and talking about it. I was like, ‘Dad, I’m going to put this in a movie if you keep talking about this.’ And he did.
“to me it represents this thing that someone clings to for their sanity. everyone should know this these are the two greatest actors of all time why doesn’t anyone know this then they can’t understand it but I I’m holding on to that…it was just kind of a funny, sad, beautiful thing about my dad and movies.”
so what is it about this forgotten nicholson-brando movie that is so fascinating?
‘the missouri breaks’
Director Arthur Penn’s Western The Missouri Breaks was released in 1976 and co-stars Nicholson and Brando, along with Randy Quaid, Harry Dean Stanton, John McLiam and Kathleen Lloyd in supporting roles. Set in late 19th century Montana, Nicholson stars as Tom Logan, a thief whose gang of horse thieves sets out to exact revenge on a corrupt baron named Braxton (Mcliam.) In defense, Braxton turns to the eccentric and fearsome Robert E. Lee Clayton: A “regulator” vigilante, played by Brando. bloody chaos ensues.
read more: what is a “revisionist western”?
Brando had a heavy hand in molding Clayton’s characterization. (meaning he completely crushed the director). As the filthy hit man, the famous method actor flaunts a goofy Irish accent…while donning a series of colorful costumes and fabulous fringe outfits. Riding confidently across the border, Clayton’s identity is highly unstable, not unlike our understanding of Brando himself. In fact, Clayton’s signature weapon, a hybrid of harpoon and mace, was purely Brando’s invention inspired by his own fascination with knives.
During filming, Brando was in exceptional shape, even for him. in addition to improvising most of his lines and using cue cards that distracted from those written for him, he also engaged in wanton banter on set. According to Peter Manso’s biography of the star, Brando used rubber spiders to scare his co-stars and frequently taunted the team. – while filming a river scene. In 1976, this type of behavior became associated with the wacko actor. still, it was a hot commodity in hollywood at the time.
In 1973, Brando won the Oscar for Best Actor for The Godfather; In 1976, Nicholson won the same coveted award for One That Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Coming off of those historic hits, Missouri Breaks should have been a huge hit. however, the wacky western flopped. it earned just $14 million at the box office and faced harsh reviews. however, in recent years, the film has gained real appreciation from moviegoers. in 2003, guardian critic xan brooks wrote: “time has done wonders for missouri’s breakups…today, its quieter passages ring more satisfyingly, while its lunatic version of a Decaying, dying frontier seems oddly appropriate…there’s a whiff of a method to [Brando’s] madness.” lucky for us the full movie is available for free on youtube! look above.
the friendship of jack nicholson and marlon brando
“marlon brando is one of the great men of the 20th and 21st centuries, and we lesser mortals are bound to dig our way through the shit and proclaim it,” nicholson boldly wrote in a rolling stone tribute to the late movie star. . The two men were neighbors in Los Angeles for 30 years and shared a fence between their houses on Mulholland Drive. on that property line, the legends of two screens were made close. But even before that, Nicholson idolized Brando.
working in the offices of mgm as a young man, nicholson remembers being stunned by the mere appearance of brando. Later, when Nicholson was a bona fide celebrity and could afford a mansion next door to Brando’s house in Beverly Hills, fate brought the actors back together. And just two years later, they became co-stars on Missouri Breaks. In his piece for Rolling Stone, Nicholson acknowledges the difficulties of filming that project. In addition to Brando’s (more annoying) quirks, the actor brought a relentless intensity that intimidated Nicholson. he describes it:
“For me, the hardest experience I’ve ever had with brando was during our escapades in Missouri together. We talked about doing a lot of projects together over the years, but that was the only time it really worked out. I think that marlon probably had more fun filming missouri escapades than any other movie he ever did he liked all the guys in the movie we were in montana he lived on the ranch where the movie was filmed he liked being close to nature .he was in his element..
I, on the other hand, was a mess. somewhere deep in my subconscious there was always this idea: ‘one day you’re going to be working with marlon brando, and you better be ready, jack’.
started well. in our first scene, he’s a killer and I’m hiding from him. whatever feelings he had of being intimidated seemed to fit into this scene. Then one night after that, I made a big mistake: I saw some of Brando’s diaries. this was a scene where he is sitting with john mcliam. I saw nine or ten takes of this same scene. each shot was an art film in itself. I sat stunned by the variety, the depth, the amount of silent articulation of what a scene meant. everything was there. It was one of the wildest things I’ve ever laid eyes on.”
After Brando’s death in 2004, Nicholson bought his neighbor’s house for $3.4 million. But due to its dilapidated condition and rampant mold, Nicholson had the house demolished two years later. still lives next door.