A Streetcar Named Desire - 60th Anniversary Edition
The movie quote "hey Stella!" is in the annals of movie history and way back in 1951, a little movie called "A Streetcar Named Desire" was released. This Tennessee Williams penned drama won 3 Oscars and is getting the Blu-ray treatment, thanks to Warner Brothers, who have released a 60th anniversary edition. It’s considered the definitive edition, as this is the original restored version featuring 3 minutes of deleted footage, deemed too racy back in its day.
"A Streetcar Named Desire" made a huge star out of Marlon Brando and one can see why. His tour-de-force performance as the angry and volatile Stan Kowalski (a part he originated on stage in 1947) is method acting at its finest. It’s a shame the talented Brando didn’t win the Oscar like his co-stars, all of whom give top-notch performances as well. Vivian Leigh shines as the disturbed head-case Blanche DuBois, who comes to visit her sister Stella (Kim Hunter), tries to date Stan’s friend Mitch (Karl Malden), and ends up developing a smoldering sexual attraction to Stan.
It’s this sexual attraction that led the censors to trim a few minutes out of Blanche’s rape scene and another scene where Stan is shirtless and says come-ons to Blanche. These have been restored for the Blu-ray. The film transfer looks fine for a black-and-white release, albeit with some very dark scenes and some minor grain. The real reason to get the Blu-ray is its many special features and a 40-page Blu-ray book on the history of the film, which is filled with great movie stills and biographies of the actors.
The audio commentary with Karl Malden is insightful, as he remembers working with the actors and has nothing but praise for star Brando. Of the five documentaries included, "Desire and Censorship" is the best of the lot, showing a side-by-side analysis of what scenes were cut or altered. "An Actor Named Brando" is a brief look at the career of the talented Brando. His very first screen test is included too, which shows him fresh-faced and innocent.
"A Streetcar Named Desire"