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Hope He Took his Traveler's Checks
July 1, 2009 2:44 PM   Subscribe

Karl Malden has died. The Oscar and Emmy winner who had many brilliant appearances as secondary characters and starred in his own hugely popular TV show was 97.
posted by Capt Jingo (76 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
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posted by zaelic at 2:47 PM on July 1, 2009


Don't leave for heaven without him.
posted by porn in the woods at 2:49 PM on July 1, 2009


Meow.
posted by middleclasstool at 2:50 PM on July 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


. :(
posted by zarq at 2:50 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by strixus at 2:52 PM on July 1, 2009


:o(
posted by gubo at 2:55 PM on July 1, 2009 [5 favorites]


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posted by Malice at 2:56 PM on July 1, 2009


I loved his work. Hard to believe he was 97. Christ, I'm old!
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 2:56 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


"This is my church!"


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posted by jquinby at 2:57 PM on July 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Godspeed, Mladen Sekulovich.

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posted by Iridic at 3:01 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by rtha at 3:02 PM on July 1, 2009


Every time I look up, another 1970s talk show stalwart is gone. Orson Bean, watch your back!
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 3:13 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by Tesseractive at 3:16 PM on July 1, 2009


Meow.
posted by idiopath at 3:19 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


That's two today.

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posted by evilcolonel at 3:21 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by Pecinpah at 3:26 PM on July 1, 2009


WHEN WILL THE CELEBRITY REAPER BE SATISFIED? WHEN?
posted by CunningLinguist at 3:27 PM on July 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'll never forget his performance in the movie BABY DOLL. R.I.P.
posted by Ron Thanagar at 3:33 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


middleclasstool: "Meow."

I feel like I've been punched in the face by nostalgia.
posted by peep at 3:36 PM on July 1, 2009


Gosh, what if EVERYONE famous died this year?
posted by Danf at 3:36 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Up yours Gustafson!

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posted by jimmythefish at 3:36 PM on July 1, 2009


erm...I should post after a nap.
posted by jimmythefish at 3:38 PM on July 1, 2009


That's two today.

Alexis Arguello

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posted by D_I at 3:45 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by Captain Cardanthian! at 3:51 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by Dumsnill at 3:56 PM on July 1, 2009


As mentioned on NBC Nightly News tonight, he and his wife celebrated their 70th anniversary this past winter. That itself is amazing.

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posted by explosion at 4:03 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


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posted by dancestoblue at 4:07 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by Ranucci at 4:17 PM on July 1, 2009


How many other stars had a usenet fan group devoted to their nose? None, as far as I can tell.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 4:25 PM on July 1, 2009 [3 favorites]


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(A Quinn Martin Production)
posted by kuujjuarapik at 4:37 PM on July 1, 2009 [4 favorites]


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posted by chihiro at 4:39 PM on July 1, 2009


Here's a clip of a young Karl Malden from Streetcar Named Desire.
posted by marsha56 at 4:46 PM on July 1, 2009


He was a great supporting actor, and, yeah, in three count 'em THREE films with Brando, which I knew but had never really, you know, processed...

Wonderful that he lived to such a ripe old age.

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posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:58 PM on July 1, 2009


I really thought he died in the late 90s. I wonder who i was thinking of.
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 5:02 PM on July 1, 2009


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(Perhaps you were thinking of either Walter Matthau or Jack Klugman?)
posted by bz at 5:04 PM on July 1, 2009


And here he is in 2000 on The West Wing.
posted by marsha56 at 5:06 PM on July 1, 2009 [2 favorites]


Oh, man, I had seen Malden in a number of films, but I couldn't think of which one it was that I so strongly remembered him from.

Now I remember: Patton. It's remarkable that he was so memorable in that movie since he was constantly sharing the screen with George C. Scott as General Patton.
posted by the other side at 5:06 PM on July 1, 2009


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Aw.
posted by tkchrist at 5:10 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by h00py at 5:19 PM on July 1, 2009


I've often confused Malden, somehow, with Gene Hackman. Although their personas were pretty different, there's something similar about them, for me... I think maybe it's because they're both men who never really looked young, exactly. Somehow they both always seemed middle-aged, even in their youth.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:24 PM on July 1, 2009



posted by dbiedny at 5:27 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by readery at 5:27 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by humanfont at 5:29 PM on July 1, 2009


One of the great movie speeches. From On the Waterfront.
posted by ferdydurke at 5:33 PM on July 1, 2009


Streetcar is without a doubt the best black & white movie I've ever seen. Maybe the best, period. It's awesome that he got an Oscar for that role -- he deserved it. Damn, I love me some Tennessee Williams.

And of course, I watched the Streets of San Francisco when I was a kid, in San Francisco. How could I not?

97, huh? Sounds like he had a good ride.
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:33 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by brandz at 5:38 PM on July 1, 2009


Why are so many celebrities dying recently?
posted by starpoint at 6:05 PM on July 1, 2009


I loved when he knocked Brando the hell off his stool for blaspheme in On The Waterfront. And he was just a messed up person in One-Eyed Jacks. Man, They had some really, really good actors coming up then. RIP Mr. Malden.
posted by Flex1970 at 6:21 PM on July 1, 2009


Why are so many celebrities dying recently?

Age, disease, over medication. The usual.

Oh, Karl - you leave a body of work that is so enviable and a character actor's face that was so memorable. You will be missed.

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posted by crossoverman at 6:25 PM on July 1, 2009


Mike Stone and Omar Bradley were the roles I best liked.
Dot
posted by nj_subgenius at 6:54 PM on July 1, 2009


Why are so many celebrities dying recently?

Eh, it's probably just Mary Hart spicing things up for the ratings.
posted by Sys Rq at 6:54 PM on July 1, 2009


The best #2 man in Hollywood.
posted by Gungho at 7:01 PM on July 1, 2009


Wow. I got a letter in the mail just today informing me that my American Express Card had been canceled due to lack of activity.

Eerie.

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posted by Slarty Bartfast at 7:12 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by OolooKitty at 7:41 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by orthogonality at 7:43 PM on July 1, 2009


To my eyes, the performances of most of the 1950s-60s Method actors have dated pretty poorly. Brando's supposedly "naturalistic" performances in On the Waterfront and A Streetcar Named Desire now appear highly mannered (which is not to say they're not good); and Montgomery Clift, much as I like his work, always seems to be playing versions of his same tortured self - quite the opposite of the Method method, as it were.

But Malden's work, to me, has always stood out. He seems to me now to have been the very best of the first wave of Method actors, who really did revolutionize screen (and stage) acting. He was an immensely subtle actor who really could tap into the strangenesses of his characters, thus humanizing them quite beautifully. He's always been one of my favorite actors, and the screen will not see another such as him in a mighty long time.
posted by Dr. Wu at 8:23 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by pmurray63 at 8:34 PM on July 1, 2009


He had fiery eyes.
posted by Flex1970 at 9:17 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by nickyskye at 9:27 PM on July 1, 2009


Well, that's just great.

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posted by dirigibleman at 9:28 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by BrotherCaine at 9:30 PM on July 1, 2009


You...you...you...brag...brag...BULL!(3:45)

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posted by maryh at 9:45 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


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posted by Askiba at 10:19 PM on July 1, 2009


The man deserved better than this, yet it's how I remember him.

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posted by mazola at 10:23 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


Aw, man. And I just watched The Cincinnati Kid the other night.

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posted by BitterOldPunk at 10:39 PM on July 1, 2009


meow
posted by pyramid termite at 11:01 PM on July 1, 2009


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posted by killy willy at 11:13 PM on July 1, 2009


It's going to be one heck of a long "In Memoriam" scroll this New Year's Eve....
posted by Oriole Adams at 11:19 PM on July 1, 2009 [1 favorite]


97?

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posted by ceri richard at 5:08 AM on July 2, 2009


what dr. wu said. it makes sense, though: malden was an adult who'd had to make a living when he came to acting. there's probably not much substitute for real life experience.

this is sad, but to me it's not "."-sad: @ 97 with that body of work. and solid performances into his late 80s, forget dots, the man's memory deserves a toast and a film festival, not a dot.
posted by lodurr at 5:37 AM on July 2, 2009


I always wished he'd play Marty. He would have been a great Marty.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:46 AM on July 2, 2009


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posted by K.P. at 7:29 AM on July 2, 2009


He was inescapable in movies and later in TV, with the "Streets of San Francisco" role and all of the "Don't leave home without it" ads for American Express. I really can't believe he was 97 either. I thought for sure he was, like, 78.

Speaking of Montgomery Clift, Malden had a fantastic smaller part in Alfred Hitchcock's "I Confess" (Clift starred).
posted by blucevalo at 8:14 AM on July 2, 2009


Here's another vote for his performance in A Streetcar Named Desire. What an incredible performance in a role that was, incredibly complex and nuanced. TBoth tough and vulnerable. Innocent and kind. Flawed, but hopeful. That film would've been a lot less than it was if not for his performance.


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posted by Skygazer at 9:09 AM on July 2, 2009


Damn, I forgot about "The Cincinnati kid," he was awesome in that too.
And probably another half dozen of my other favorite movies that I'm just flaking on right now.
posted by Capt Jingo at 9:26 AM on July 2, 2009


Oh, I'm so sorry to see this, tho at 97 he probably had accomplished what he wanted. Not only was he perfectly hangdog (and eventually angry) as Mitch in Streetcar, he played that sorta repugnant character in Baby Doll; he was a president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and Mike Stone of the San Francisco PD.

Vanity Fair printed a picture of him in his living room a couple years ago. I don't think he was wearing a hat, but he looked comfortable and rumpled nonetheless. A far cry from Mitch.

He must have had something to do with Communist trials in the 50s. Everyone else did.
posted by goofyfoot at 4:00 AM on July 3, 2009


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