Brando’s Rebellious Western

Inside Criterion / Sneak Peeks — Nov 23, 2016

After years of cultivating his immortal on-screen persona as a handsome, brooding outsider, Marlon Brando expanded his creative ambitions when he both directed and starred in One-Eyed Jacks, his first and only time behind the camera. Boasting VistaVision cinematography that captures both the beauty of the film’s desert landscapes and the swaggering charisma of its lead, this landmark western showcases the complexity of Brando’s talents, which are miraculously evident despite the many complications that hampered its production. This week, we released our edition of the film in a new 4K digital restoration, which was undertaken by Universal Pictures in partnership with The Film Foundation and in consultation with Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg.

In the below excerpt from a new video essay featured on our release, critic and filmmaker David Cairns analyzes the film’s boldly revisionist take on western themes and Brando’s dynamism as a performer and director.