Stellar little film. Not only was it completely unsettling at times, but the camerawork reminded me at times of Fritz Lang's film Fury, particularly the closeups of the faces during the jail fire in that film. My only complaint is its a bit short! No wonder the Code was shortly after strictly enforced and this received a condemned rating by the catholic decency group. Highly recommended. TCM shows a pretty good print
Thanks to TCM and a beautiful, sparkling print, this unsettling, violent tale from William Faulkner of a young, not so innocent southern belle trapped in a decaying bootleg mansion with a bunch of violent drunken no-hopers, is a revelation. Miriam Hopkins delivers one of the great, sympathetic screen performances ever, and Jack la Rue as the thug who rapes her, is also extremely unsettling. Restoration Criterion plz!
It's a morality tale. That being said, this Pre-Code film slices and dices the formula of such potential tearjerkers--dissecting the psychology of a unique cinematic party girl. Within the aftermath of lethal and sexual violence, polarized reactions occur within Temple's already deep self-loathing, forcing Stockholm Syndrome-like efforts at self-protection. It's not Faulkner, but it's torrid, sexy and thoughtful.