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Ben Quick arrives in Frenchman's Bend, MS after being kicked out of another town for allegedly burning a barn for revenge. Will Varner owns just about everything in Frenchman's Bend and he hires Ben to work in his store. Will thinks his own son, Jody, who manages the store, lacks ambition and despairs of him getting his wife, Eula, pregnant. Will thinks his daughter, Clara, a schoolteacher, will never get married. He decides that Ben Quick might make a good husband for Clara to bring some new blood into the family. Written by
Lisa Grable <email@example.com>
Considering the cast and the fine Faulkner story, I was expecting wonderful things from this movie, maybe another Splendor in the Grass, but I felt badly let down.
The script was, in a word, wretched. There were unmotivated strong emotions, stilted dialog, not helped by poorly faked Southern accents from players who are not not native Southerners, loaded with plot holes and murky relationships that seemed to go up and down like the stock market.
The cast that looked so good on paper didn't cut it. Anthony Franciosa looked like high school senior play. Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, who went on to Academy award performances later, were just over the top and struggling with bad dialog in this one. I thought Orson Welles and Angela Lansbury were was excellent playing off each other, but their relationship in a subplot was undefined and didn't advance the story at all.
My family, with different generations, watched the movie at home on DVD with me and their reaction was similar to mine: a sympathetic disappointment in the work of some of our favorite players.
6 of 9 people found this review helpful.
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