It has been one Hell of a week, especially when it comes to glittery stars becoming unexpected angels, and if Farrah and Michael weren't sad enough, now wonderful Karl Malden had to go and bite the dust.
I'd always found him to be totally bitchin', especially after watching him as the wildly frustrated middle-aged owner of a Southern cotton gin, who was married to a manipulative 19 year old (played gorgeously by Carroll Baker), in Elia Kazan's controversial 1956 flick, Baby Doll. But it wasn't until I went to a special screening of A Streetcar Named Desire at Grauman's Chinese Theatre that I really felt his acting wrath.
Malden's graceful performance is one for the history books, as he plays the level-headed mensch to Brando's brute, but there is one particular moment that audibly blew the audience's mind over all others in the film . . . it happens during a scene where he has sneaked away from his motley crew of poker pals to try and court the beautifully broken Blance Du Bois (played by Vivien Leigh). Brando interrupts him by calling "Miiiitch!" from the other room, and Malden turns his head to the camera, with his face taking up the whole screen, and screams back "commannng!". It doesn't sound like much, but on the big screen, Malden killed it, I got goosebumps all-over, and the audience let out a collective "whoa". It was a cinematic experience i'll never forget, thanks to this unparalleled talent.