Marty is one of those movies that can surprise you lengthwise but still deliver. It's a great movie, heartwarming, and with a very important message. Despite its age, the film is still capable of tackling the classic subject of "guy meeting his right gal" in a simplistic and meaningful way than any other modern teenage bullshit flick could ever do.The film is a 36 hour life recount of 35 year old, Italian Marty Pilleti (Ernest Borgnine in a career performance), a shy, chubby, ordinary Bronx butcher, who has been always bashed by his family and friends about when is he going to get married, since all of his sisters and brothers have and he hasn't. This depresses him even more that when he goes to the regular bar to meet his friend Angie (Joe Mantell in another career performance) to plan for this Saturday night he lets all of his depression out to him, after Angie insists on going to the Stardust Ballroom.
"A Rare Classic"
Marty: Listen, Ange. I have been looking for a girl every Saturday night of my life. I'm 34 years old. I'm just tired of looking, that's all. I'd like to find a girl. Everybody's always telling me, 'Get married, get married, and get married!' Don't you think I want to get married? I want to get married. Everybody drives me crazy.
Also a classic line also comes out too.
Angie: What do you feel like doing tonight?
Marty: I don't know, Ange. What do you feel like doing?
But then, pressure from his mom (Ester Miciotti) to go to the ballroom, which was recommended by his cousin Tommy (Jerry Paris), finally breaks down Marty, who finally agrees to go. So he and Angie go, and there he meets in an abrupt way Clara (Betsy Blair in another career performance), a girl who has been dumped by some guy, and from then on he has the night of his life. But then his friends and family start observing faults on Clara, and that puts Marty in a crossroads, and it's up to him if he's going to listen to his friends, or his heart.
The film is basically a simple character study of a person who has been always down on luck on girls. It is also observed the peer pressure that his family and friends put to him to find a girl and when he gets a girl. That, plus the reactions the Marty has towards that are one of the key moments in the film. Also, it gives you a simple approach on personís reactions when he meets "the right one." The subplot in the film also supports the main idea of the script since it deals about where do the parents fit after all of their children get married, especially widowed or single parents, and what consequences can have among parent and son. Thanks to this, the film also makes you think about that, and makes you reflect on your life and ask yourself many questions about your relationship with your parents. That, I thought, was also an important key in the film's script, which was written by Paddy Chayefsky, who would later on, write the classics The Hospital and Network.
The performances were great, especially from Borgnine, Mantell and Blair. The rest of the supporting cast was also great. Also this film is what launched Borgnine from supporting guy to many other lead roles in later films. Delbert Mann's direction was great and never looses touch. It was basically an all-around great film.In the end, I recommend this movie to anyone, including people on their 30's who are still trying to get the right one. It's really a great enjoyable film, and really worth seeing. It's one of those films that point out that a girl maybe a dog for some people, but for other people, it maybe their perfect match. (4.5-5)
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originally posted: 04/28/01 00:24:40