To this day, men still emulate the look of Marlon Brando's Johnny from "The Wild One." Heck, the late John Belushi emulated the Wild One's look and wore a costume like Brando's in at least 2 sketches on SNL (circa 1976/1977). Nearly 70 after "The Wild One" was released, men still try to capture the essence of whatever cool Brando had in that movie by copying his look!
Johnny may be a rebel and a troubled young man but he has a magnetism that attracts women and conflict to him.
This film didn't have much budget; it's not full of special effects and explosions. There's (thankfully!) not much rear-screen projection for the motorcycle scenes. The strength lies in the performances of the leads and the rest of the cast. Besides being a Brando vehicle, the movie features one of the earliest if not THE FIRST appearance of Lee Marvin. Marvin is suitably menacing in the film and the TRUE terror any small town should fear.
It's a story of rival gangs with no real direction fighting over scraps in what looks like the middle of Nowhere, America.
A local girl becomes attracted to Johnny and there may or may not be anything happening between them until a rival motor gang leader who was an ex-member of Johnny's cycle club arrives to create trouble. From there, it becomes a clash between the small town order and 2 cycle gangs that don't respect traditional rules or cops.
It's a real basic film but the Brando character and lead actress draw you into the story. For a while, Johnny makes you wonder if his character is a real sociopath, if he has any redeeming value.
The Blu ray release is very basic. It has a menu and that's about it for extras. No trailer. Picture and audio quality are probably about the best they can be for this film and it's the best quality release of this movie on home video to date.
For a budget home video release, it's a no-brainer. Buy it if you like motorcycle movies, old Hollywood, Marlon Brando, and a 1950s movie that doesn't live up to the conformal stereotypes of that decade.
I think this is absolutely one of three Brando movies any movie afficionado should have. The other two are On The Waterfront and The Godfather.