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William A. Seiter
A perfect example of the Thalberg/Selnick/MGM high-style at its most polished. Flawlessly directed by the under-rated contract director Frank Borzage, the film features superb ensemble work from the entire stellar cast plus an unusually malicious turn by Fay Bainter who never quite showed her lady-like fangs like this before. Adapted from a well-made Broadway play of 1934, the sexual tension between the two unloving couples could never be realized as it might have been had there not been censorship so instead of a little explosive adultery and fiery hanky-panky, as the plot seems to suggest, we end up with a hot summer night instead with everyone complaining about the heat until the "burning" resolution --but not the one you might think. (Had Tennessee Williams been around in those days we might have had an entirely different ending.) Yes, it is definitely a soap opera but MGM always gave us the best soap money could buy!
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