Sunday, May 5, 2013

Karl Malden in "On the Waterfront"

In one of the most poignant scenes from the film “On the Waterfront”, Karl Malden delivers one of the all-time great sermons ever captured on screen. Father Barry, portrayed by Malden in the film, has taken an oath to stand by one of the men who has agreed to testify against the mobsters who control the waterfront. When that man is killed Father Barry steps up to the plate and tells the truth about the corruption that mires the world all around him.

In the 6 decades since this film was released many things have changed. Technologically we have eclipsed some of our wildest dreams, yet there is still a vacant spot in our hearts and souls. And the problems always come back to the same point of origin; greed and vanity. 

That’s right, vanity. For what can be more vain than to think that your life; your needs, your desires; are more worthy of fulfillment than another’s? Until you can answer that question honestly, and without prevarication, then we will never grow to our true height as a civilized society. 

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