Ah, gorgeous, tragic, “bisexual” actors of the 1950s. That’s a Jeopardy! category I could stand to see more often. Today would’ve been pioneering “method” actor (like Brando and James Dean) and eternal glamor boy Montgomery Clift‘s 92nd birthday, and if you think the car accident that disfigured his face in 1956 or his ensuing 10-year spiral of substance abuse completely taints his status as a legendary hottie, I pity you. Clift gave us so much brooding attractiveness that it’s possible the entire Twilight series manifested from his ashes. In celebration of the mysterious man and Liz Taylor BFF on his birthday, let’s count down his nine hottest moments.
9. Let’s just combine all these stoic portraits into one hot item.
At different angles, Clift’s face can resemble anyone from Warren Beatty (center) to Tom Cruise (right). That means his beauty is timeless, but his stony, longing chill remains a one-of-a-kind attribute. Interesting to see none of that august harshness in his later films, particularly Judgment at Nuremberg.
8. Oversize suit? Outsize grin? Still hot.
It’s rare that you get to see Clift’s megawatt grin, probably because he’s too busy achieving stony perfection in glamor portraits. Here, he remains sexy while embracing an opposite aestethic: blthe, toothy beauty.
7. Dandy realness in The Heiress
He’s dressed up all silly and frilly here, but make no mistake: Monty seriously resents the hell out of this production. He claimed costar Olivia de Havilland, who’d already won an Oscar for To Each His Own and gave one of the century’s finest performances in Gone With the Wind, didn’t give him enough to work with as an actor. Naturally, she won another Oscar for this movie.