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At a lonely military outpost on American Samoa, sticky heat alternates with torrential rain. A ship quarantine strands here Sadie Thompson, a "breezy dame" who sets the Marines afire... and self-righteous Mr. Davidson, powerful head of the Mission Board, who suspects Sadie is a fugitive from the notorious Emerald Club of Honolulu. Meanwhile, Sadie is courted by crude but good-hearted Marine Sgt. Phil O'Hara. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sadie's story gets the full treatment...Rita is vivacious but story is too familiar...
The old Sadie Thompson story gets the full Technicolor treatment and some eye-filling location photography of a beautiful South Seas island--but nothing hides the fact that the story is simply another reworking of the Somerset Maugham saga about a sinner, a man of the cloth and a bunch of rowdy U.S. Marines.
RITA HAYWORTH gives her all to put some much needed vitality into the tale and puts some heat into her dance number--"The Heat Is On"--while the men aren't shy about showing how they appreciate her earthy charms. But there's not much to say about the story and its labored message about sin and redemption with JOSE FERRER as the uptight preacher who takes a moral stand on her behavior but can't practice what he preaches.
ALDO RAY and CHARLES BRONSON are among the Sadie admirers in uniform and both of them do splendid jobs. Rita has a nice chemistry in all her scenes with Aldo Ray but her scenes with Ferrer never quite have the impact they're supposed to. She handles all the dramatic moments well, but there's a tired look about her face that is most noticeable during the latter half of the film.
Not exactly an upbeat tale, but Rita does make a believable Sadie Thompson.
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