Marlon Brando video tributes are ubiquitous, but this one offers a silent, slow-mo glimpse of the ambush-murder scene in Elia Kazan‘s Viva Zapata (’52), which I haven’t seen in too many years. (It goes from 2:05 to 2:27.) It’s without question one of the most devastating, perfectly composed death scenes ever filmed, and one of the trippiest.
The clip doesn’t include Brando-Zapata dropping into a kneeling fetal-ball after being drilled by 100 rifles, but the footage of Joseph Wiseman‘s Fernando Aguirre howling with rage as the white horse escapes is breathtaking.
I’m wasting my breath in asking again why there’s been no success in clearing up the rights issue over this film, which would permit a DVD/Bluray to be released. I know that a Viva Zapata DVD is obtainable in Mexico. I was about to say that after the rights issue is finally settled that Zapata needs to be re-mastered by Criterion — bite my tongue. Knowing these guys, they’d probably put out some Stagecoach-level release, squawky and scratched and grainstormed all to hell because their tech guys decided not to digitally tweak the elements in any way.