One-Eyed Jacks

Quite by chance, while surfing the television channels last evening, I caught the start of the movie One-Eyed Jacks. I had never seen this 1961 film starring and directed by Marlon Brando until last night, but I feel a personal connection with the film. The movie received mixed reviews even though it was nominated for an Oscar for best cinematography. When the movie was released, I was stationed with the Army in France. The Army and Air Force Motion Picture Service brought movies to Europe for the service men and women, but I do not recall this being one. Charles Neider was the author of the novel, The Authentic Death of Hendry Jones, on which the movie script, One-Eyed Jacks, was based. Neider is named in the movie’s credits as one of the screenwriters.

I met Charlie in January 1977 when he was in Antarctica on a grant from the National Science Foundation to write a book about the frozen continent. That book, Beyond Cape Horn—Travels in the Antarctic, was published by Sierra Club Books in 1980. Charlie mentions me in the book when he describes our travels together from McMurdo Station to Palmer Station on board the USCGC Burton Island. I parted company with Charles when I departed Palmer Station onboard the RV Hero for my first journey across the Drake Passage. We never met again.

Robert Murphy onboard Burton Island. Photo by Charles Neider.

Neider was born in Russia in 1915 and died at Princeton, New Jersey, in 2001. He was a noted Mark Twain scholar as well as being the author of several books on Antarctica.

Charles Neider onboard Burton Island. Photo by Robert Murphy

RV Hero and USCGC Burton Island in Arthur Harbor, Palmer Station, Antarctica, 1977.

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One Response to One-Eyed Jacks

  1. Lindsey Barker says:

    I love Marlon Brando. I’ll check out the movie.

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