This film adaptation of the Lillian Hellman play depicts a post-Civil War southern community where nothing is more important than money and power to Regina Giddens (Bette Davis). In order to join her equally ruthless brothers in a scheme that is sure to gain her wealth and power, she uses her young, naïve daughter to fetch her estranged, ailing husband who is living elsewhere. When she cannot convince her husband to give her the money, she sets forward a cunning plan which escalates. —IMDb
Wyler was born Wilhelm Weiller to a Jewish family, a Swiss father and a German mother, in Mulhouse in the French region of Alsace (then part of the German Empire). His mother was a cousin of Carl Laemmle, founder of Universal Pictures. His father, Leopold, started as a traveling salesman which he later turned into a thriving haberdashery business.
During his childhood Wyler attended a number of schools and developed a reputation as “something of a hellraiser,” being expelled more than once for misbehavior. His mother often took him and his older brother Robert, to concerts, opera, and the theatre, as well as the early cinema. Sometimes at home his family and their friends would stage amateur theatricals for personal enjoyment.
After realizing that William was not interested in the family business, and having suffered through a terrible year financially after World War I, his mother, Melanie, contacted her distant cousin about opportunities for him. Laemmle was in the habit… read more
Yes, Bette's great here, but I think my favourite performance is Herbert Marshall's fatigued patriarch. Such elegant dying.