Somebody: The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando

Somebody: The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando Stefan Kanfer
  • Title: Somebody: The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando
  • Author: Stefan Kanfer
  • ISBN: 9780571244126
  • Page: 416
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Somebody: The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando Stefan Kanfer Somebody The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando Marlon Brando will never cease to fascinate us for his triumphs as an actor On the Waterfront The Godfather Last Tango in Paris as well as his disasters for the power of the screen portrayals he g
    Marlon Brando will never cease to fascinate us for his triumphs as an actor On the Waterfront, The Godfather, Last Tango in Paris , as well as his disasters for the power of the screen portrayals he gave, and for his turbulent, tumultuous personal life Seamlessly intertwining the man and the work, Kanfer takes us through Brando s troubled childhood, to his arrival in NMarlon Brando will never cease to fascinate us for his triumphs as an actor On the Waterfront, The Godfather, Last Tango in Paris , as well as his disasters for the power of the screen portrayals he gave, and for his turbulent, tumultuous personal life Seamlessly intertwining the man and the work, Kanfer takes us through Brando s troubled childhood, to his arrival in New York in the 1940s, where he studied with the legendary Stella Adler, and at the age of twenty three became the toast of Broadway in A Streetcar Named Desire Kanfer expertly examines each of Brando s films from The Men in 1950 to The Score in 2001 making clear the evolution of Brando s singular genius, while also shedding light on the cultural evolution of Hollywood itself And he brings into focus Brando s self destructiveness, his lifelong dissembling, his deeply ambivalent feelings towards his chosen vocation, and the tragedies that shadowed his final years This is a never before seen portrait of one of the most extraordinary talents of the twentieth century.
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      Stefan Kanfer

    About Stefan Kanfer


    1. Stefan Kanfer is the author of fifteen books, including the bestselling biographies of show business icons GROUCHO BALL OF FIRE Lucille Ball SOMEBODY Marlon Brando and TOUGH WITHOUT A GUN Humphrey Bogart He has also written many social histories, among them THE LAST EMPIRE, about the De Beers diamond company, and STARDUST LOST, an account of the rise and fall of the Yiddish Theater in New York.Kanfer also wrote two novels about World War II and served as the only journalist on the President s Commission on the Holocaust He was the first by lined cinema critic for Time magazine, where he worked as writer and editor for than two decades He has been given many writing awards and was named a Literary Lion of the New York Public Library He lives in New York where he serves as a columnist for the City Journal of the Manhattan Institute.


    203 Comments


    1. In the early years he knew each and every one of his lines but he improvised He insisted on many takes and each one was different, and, they said, each one brilliant Later on, he didn t bother to learn his lines at all, he d have cue cards stuck all over the place, for instance on the shirt of the actor he was playing opposite, and he d explain this by saying that in real life people didn t know what they were going to say before they said it So he would be looking around for the right cue card [...]

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    2. It is hard to justify the blurb s characterisation of this book as a definitive book on Brando there are dozens of others, of course, including Peter Manso s 1000 page monster , but it is certainly a well written roadmap through a bizarre and extraordinary life Brando is probably the most influential actor in the history of Hollywood Streetcar, Waterfront, Godfather, Last Tango, Apocalypse Now and also made outright turkeys than any other leading actor almost everything in the 1960s and after A [...]

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    3. I don t read many celebrity biographies, but this was a decent and fair look at an infuriating and fascinating subject Literate, too there were words in here that I didn t know, so it s written above the standard tabloid journalism This has made me want to watch the good Brando films again.

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    4. Extremely good bio and analysis of a troubled, talented soul Very well written And I hardly ever read books about movie stars.

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    5. I could always hold my breath longer than anyone else.

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    6. It s very hard to keep my thoughts on Brando separated from my thoughts on the book I can t quite put a finger on how accurate it is since it s the first I read on him, but meanwhile I d read articles and another bio thingy Sophia Loren s autobiography, which is what made me curious about Brando in the first place and in those I found additional information, some contradicting those that were in this very book for instance, was Monty Clift his rival, his friend or wait for it his lover Did Brand [...]

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    7. Kanfer seems to have poured over all available research resources that include books and articles by and about Brando and interviews of those who were associated with him at various points in his life and career as well as any other relevant historical material that would help to establish a frame of reference for dominant influences and major developments in Brando s reckless life and remarkable career Kanfer offers a wealth of insights into Brando s most significant and invariably dysfunctiona [...]

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    8. On early Brando Kirk Douglas I went up for a part in Truckline I didn t get it Bitter, I went to see the play, watched another actor play my role I loved the first two acts he was terrible I congratulated myself on how much better I would have been Suddenly, in the third act, he erupted, electrifying the audience I thought, My God, he s good and looked in the programme for his name Marlon Brando John Huston, after a screening Christ It was like a furnace door opening the heat came off the screen [...]

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    9. Just read Brando s own book That s where most of this came from Not bad.

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    10. This book deals mainly with each of the films that Marlon Brando made throughout his career It does get in some detail about his personal life Brando was an Adult Child of an Alcoholic so am I his Mother spent his entire childhood drunk and his Father was a critical tyrant Consequently Brando s self esteem from childhood on into adulthood suffered.Knowing what this experience is like I have a lot of compassion for Brando and can understand his feelings of never being good enough, not able to sta [...]

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    11. I thought Kanfer s Somebody The Reckless Life and Remarkable Career of Marlon Brando was very articulate and well written It is obvious that a lot of research went into the writing of this book However, my problem is that it was way too depressing and centred around the recklessness than the remarkable I could hardly read from chapter to chapter without feeling total despair and impending doom lurking around every corner On one hand, one could say, well, the truth is the truth Nonetheless, ther [...]

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    12. Dit boek lezen is zoals plaatsnemen op een motor en resoluut het startpedaal intrappen Je bent vertrokken voor een avontuurlijke rit Je krijgt niet alleen in een inzicht in de levensloop van een zeer speciale acteur qua karakter, maar ook een hele filmgeschiedenis in boekvorm Het leven van Marlon Brando is gewoonweg de geschiedenis van Hollywood Tragisch voor een stuk ook.Biografie n zijn altijd boeiend en deze van Marlon Brando dan al zeker Je kan stellen dat de man in de jaren 40 eigenhandig e [...]

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    13. This book is a well reported specimen, but little recommends it If you know Marlon Brando as no than a name and Vito Corleone, Somebody is a good place to start.Much of this is rehashed and borrowed from the numerous other biographies and exposes of Brando, which is fine It is a little awkward whenever author Stefan Kanfer goes the psychoanalytic route It reads like something one might expect in a promotional spot on the Oprah set, but there we are.It is not entirely Kanfer s fault Brando unaw [...]

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    14. The book was even and fair than many other Brando biographies Any criticisms I have are toward some shoddy family research and a lack of some easily available public information example Rebecca is not Tarita s daughter as he mentions a few times And that Dad Sam Gilman isn t mentioned at all even though it s in the public record that Marlon, Dad and Wally Cox had their ashes spread together Dad also appeared in many movies with Marlon starting with his first, The Men Minor critiques however.

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    15. Stefan Kanfer wrote a detailed run through of Brando s life, which is almost impossible to mess up, considering all the amazing stories he lived through Kanfer does has a tendency to lose track a bit in his storytelling, digressing into other stories sometimes, but what I most felt when finishing this book was MORE character study, including a lot quotes I didn t feel there were enough quotes Somehow after reading Kanfer s biography, Brando remains a mystery to me But maybe that s just how it s [...]

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    16. I appreciate a biographer who can present the facts of a person s life, theorize on the holes, and remain unbiased Kanfer does an excellent job of that While I consider myself a Brando aficionado, I learned a few things I didn t know one of the notable things can be found at the top of page 207 tell me you didn t laugh aloud when you read it , and got in depth into points that I was already familiar with.

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    17. Apparently, Marlon had a very sad life He loved too many women too much of the time, plus he didn t care about acting at all His kids were a mess He thought everything was a joke The sad thing is that he was probably a genius What I learned from this book was that Marlon was too smart for the film community.

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    18. Fair and well written biography of one of the great actors of the 20th century, someone who pushed the art form forward even as he held contempt for the film business Brando was an intelligent man but ultimately rather shallow in his personal life, someone who could never seem to get out of his own way in order to fulfill what could have been a serious legacy 3 stars

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    19. Finished this a while ago, as well made me want to netflix if I can verb that noun all of Brando s early movies the boo started well, and does an excellent job with Brando s early career and success, but much like its subject, gets lost and meanders in the middle and end Not even the discussion of Apocalypse Now rescues the latter half of the book.

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    20. This is a really interesting story about the actor, the time, and the journey of the human spirit as it tries to overcome the weight it inherits from the world Some of the best writing I ve read in a while.

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    21. I think Marlon Brando represents the turning point in movie acting Actors are either before or after Brando like guitar players are either before or after Jimi Hendrix But you sure wouldn t want to be him.

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    22. Immensely gifted actor bursts on to the scene, changes his profession and then, with one or two triumphs that are almost immediately disowned or disavowed, proceeds to systematically squander his gifts for over 40 years.

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    23. The story was OK, but I got lost a lot on so many tangents It was a bit hard to follow.

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    24. Duuude, this was kind of depressing, but kind of fascinating also.

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    25. Oh Brando Such an interesting and emotionally crippled man.

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    26. Very interesting and debunks a lot of the sensationalism of others about this very talented tormented soul.

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    27. This book is utter crap The detail kill s it you only find out about him as a adult near the end.I liked the pictures though.

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    28. Honestly this book was so factual and boring and whatever.

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    29. excellent bio but also a great cultural and political history of the U.S from the 30 s to present

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