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A young man returns home after a three year tour of duty in the navy only to find things are somewhat different from when he left. His kid sister has grown into a young woman, the job he thought was waiting for him turns out to have some unique conditions, and perhaps most importantly his former sweetheart has married a wealthy and much older man. Disillusioned, he drifts from job to job while trying hard to avoid the advances of his former girlfriend, who is unhappy in her marriage and longs for something extra. While all he wants to do is make something of his life, his will power will be put to the ultimate test. Written by
Kevin Steinhauer <K.Steinhauer@BoM.GOV.AU>
The New York Times reported in its review of the film that writer William Inge requested his name be removed from the credits due to changes made by the films producer to "glorify Ann-Margret." The screenplay was credited to "Walter Gage" in the finished film. In a interview for "Films and Filming," from January 1976, Ann-Margret explained the real story: "You should have seen the film we originally shot. After the alterations were made William Inge had his name taken off of it. His screenplay had been wonderful. So brutally honest. And the woman Laurel, as he wrote her, was mean...and he made that very sad. But the studio at that time didn't want me to have that kind of an image for the young people of America. They thought it was too brutal a portrayal. It had been filmed entirely, using William Inge's script, but a year after it was completed they got another writer in, and another director. They wanted me to re-do five key scenes. And those scenes changed the story. That's when Inge took his name off. There were two of those scenes that I just refused to do. The other three...I did, but I was upset and angry. They'd altered the whole life of the story and made the character I played another person altogether. To put it mildly, they'd softened the blow that Inge had delivered. If only everyone could have seen that film the way he wrote it." See more »
Attempts to uncover small town scandals, but film is a mere whimper
Writer William Inge took his name off the credits for this Ann-Margret/Michael Parks dud about serviceman returning home to family and friends, only to find everything has changed while he's been away. The screenplay, now credited to Walter Gage, hints at provocative themes (an older gentleman whom Parks sees about a job actually comes on to him, eyebrow-raising for 1965!), but the characters don't make much sense. Ann-Margret does everything she can to bring life to the proverbial ex-girlfriend role, but her Laurel is an unconvincing, mercurial concoction--you cannot get a grip on this woman--and A-M has no choice but to fall back on her patented sultriness. A slight, watchable movie with bad editing and drab cinematography, however it's a curious attempt at modernizing a "Picnic"-like scenario. ** from ****
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