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Fugitive Kind

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Product Description

Val Xavier, a drifter of obscure origins arrives at a small town and gets a job in a store run by Lady Torrence, a sex-starved woman whose husband Jabe M. Torrance is dying of cancer upstairs. Val is pursued by Carol Cutere, the enigmatic local tramp-of-good-family, who covets his snakeskin jacket as much as his body and tries to seduce him in the cemetery. Val is more attracted to the mature Lady and gets her pregnant.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Brando & Tennessee April 12 2010
By Michael B. Druxman - Published on
THE FUGITIVE KIND is classic early Marlon Brando, who received a million dollar paycheck for his participation in this picture. The problem is that, watching this renowned actor at the height of his popularity, one can't help but feel that he is "doing a Marlon Brando cliché," rather than making the character of Valentine Xavier live and breathe.

Part of the trouble is the script, which was freely adapted by Tennessee Williams and Meade Roberts from Williams' BATTLE OF ANGELS and its rewrite, ORPHEUS DESCENDING. Both versions of the play were unsuccessful during their New York engagements.

This is not one of Williams' better plays. It contains no unforgettable characters like Blanche DuBois, Stanley Kowalski or "Big Daddy," and its ending is a downer. Actually. most of Williams' plays have unhappy conclusions, but in most cases, when Hollywood brought them to the big screen, the endings were, arguably, more upbeat. That is not the case with this independent 1960 production.

On the other hand, even a less than superb Tennessee Williams play has it's poetic moments that mesmerize, such as Brando's scene in which he tells about the little bird that flies on the wind and only touches earth when it dies.

Masterfully directed (within the confines of the script) by Sidney Lumet, THE FUGITIVE KIND is a morose drama that crackles with several fine performances, in particular those of Woodward as a lost soul crying for help and Magnani as a woman who has been forced to keep her strong emotions pent up inside for all of her life.

© Michael B. Druxman
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Wild Things Aug. 4 2010
By Stefania Casi (The Cultural Sojourner) - Published on
"Wild things leave their skin the fugitive kind can follow their kind." This film seethes with a dark, sultry, gothic atmosphere: Tennessee Williams brand of Southern discomfort. Life in this small town is painfully slow, quietly desperate and overwhelmingly restrictive, barely masking its inherent corruptness and grotesque stagnation. Marlon Brando oozes sexuality and sensitivity, playing the outsider ~ the bad boy with the good heart. He is an absolute and primal magnetic force; you just can't take your eyes off of him! Pleasantly surprising, his co-stars, Woodward and Magnani, offer unforgettably powerful, dramatic interpretations, uncompromised by Brando's charisma. The love story is never believable, but the shared camera time creates the illusion of intimacy, compensating for the lack of chemistry. Williams' microcosm is all too familiar, the direction is theatrical, but the performances are mesmerizing and the social indictment remains damning.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Often Forgotten Brando in Tennessee Williams' Masterpiece--The Fugitive Kind May 19 2014
By Paul Culloton - Published on
Verified Purchase
When Marlon Brando passed away, I rifled through the local and national newspapers wondering if I would find "The Fugitive Kind" in his filmography. Of course, I wasn't entirely surprised when over 3/4 of the newspapers that I had did not list this great film; it is an equally remarkable and unusual film and I would bet that it was probably panned by the critics of its time just as it was, sadly, overlooked in Brando's week of obituary and tributes.

In the early 1990s,"The Fugitive Kind" was broadcast at least twice per week on a nearby secondary public television station and, for a while, I was only able to pick it up in the middle. When, finally, I knew the title I phoned my favorite video store and ordered a copy on VHS. The film easily places in the top of my collection for all the right variety of reasons: outstanding writing, casting, acting, lighting, filming, subject, setting, redeeming social value, etc. I am delighted to have, at last, a widescreen copy on DVD. "The Fugitive Kind" --truly a must see film. Enjoy!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Excellent. Marlon Brando at one of his best Jan. 27 2015
By Alan Rosenfeld - Published on
Verified Purchase
Excellent. Marlon Brando at one of his best performances
How could it miss...Anna Magnani and Marlon Brando...Joanne Woodward and Victor Jory Sept. 23 2015
By M. Beck - Published on
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A Classic not to be missed!

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