October Blind Spot Review: On The Waterfront (1954)

on the waterfront poster

“Isn’t it simple as one, two, three? One: The working conditions are bad. Two: They’re bad because the mob does the hiring. And three: The only way we can break the mob is to stop letting them get away with murder.”
– Father Barry

SYNOPSIS: An ex-prize fighter turned longshoreman struggles to stand up to his corrupt union bosses. – via IMDB


GRADE 7Man, been waiting for ages to eventually get to this, and I am glad that I did. I thought that On The Waterfront was a pretty good movie, but now that I have seen it, I won’t be rushing to rewatch it in a hurry (not because it is bad). I was pleased to hear that there would be some mob focus here (y’all know how I am about that stuff), but was disappointed when there was not as much mob as there was about Terry talking big and trying to not get too involved with everything, once again. The romance in this was old school and clean, something I really enjoyed. I thought that Marlon Brando and Eva Marie Saint worked really well together. The performances were especially good here from Brando and Karl Malden. Father Barry was a character that impressed me endlessly. I have to admit that, while I was engaged throughout, I did feel that the movie was a tad long – I felt it, which is a pity, because other than that it was pretty much smooth sailing. I enjoyed the morals and the issues that were addressed in this, and think that the pacing and development for the story was handled quite well for the most part. I might get shot for not scoring this higher, but I thought that this was good, but not the greatest movie of all time. I don’t really have too much to say, as this movie has been discussed endlessly by a heck of a lot of people. All I can say is that I liked it, enjoyed it, and I was engaged, and thought that it was solidly directed, and carried by good performances.

11 thoughts on “October Blind Spot Review: On The Waterfront (1954)

  1. I think we felt the same way about this after watching it. It’s a very good film, excellently constructed and played across the board but it’s such heavy going that it’s not something I have any desire to go running back to soon.

    Eva Marie Saint is wonderful in her role but I’ve always regretted in a small way that Elizabeth Montgomery of Bewitched who was the other close contender for the part wasn’t chosen. I can envision her in it and wonder what her chemistry with Brando would have been like.


    1. I am very pleased to hear that I am not alone in this – thought I was going to catch hell for it!

      I didn’t know she was a contender, could have been very interesting!


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