Game warden Miller lives on an isolated island off the Carolina coast. The only other inhabitant is Evvie, an naive young girl to whom Miller is attracted. Traver, a black musician on the run from a lynch mob after falsely being accused of rape, lands on the island. Miller wants to turn him in and remove him from the tryst, but Evvie likes Traver and protects him. A preacher arrives from the mainland to rescue Evvie from her situation, and Traver's presence is discovered. Miller is now forced to decide whether to turn him over to the mob and lose standing in the girl's eyes.Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
Go ahead. Say something, say something fresh.
It's easy to insult a man when you got him hog-tied.
You intimatin' I'm a coward 'cause I got you tied up here? Well that ain't it. Believe it, don't believe it, makes no difference. I seen my death half dozen times. And I never yet been scared and that's the truth. You see it's... just like you got a alligator, you tie him up. A lot of soft-hearted people try to-- try to make out a nigger's a man. I just don't believe it. I don't believe you are; God...
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Is this the most sympathetic portrayal of a priest in a Bunuel film?
On the surface a simple little tale involving a middle aged white man, a young girl whose grandfather has just died and a black fugitive, later to be joined by a gung-ho racist and a priest. But simple, this is not. Beautifully photographed and leisurely told this is a tale of man's inhumanity to man, the corruption of innocence and the very nature of man. The young girl is central to the film and she gives a fantastic performance as she catches the eyes of all the men, yet retains her dignity throughout. It is not really true to consider her totally innocent from the start for she happily takes money for the 'stolen' items and intends to keep the cash for herself. What is more we assume she intends to buy dresses and make-up to make herself more beautiful. Tough though it may seem for her to become aware of such matters so young, we just have to accept it. She is reluctant for her relationship with Miller to become sexual, but not as unhappy as the priest and she has been promised more dresses and significantly a silver pistol, as she gleefully informs him after she survives his baptism. The racial affairs are extremely well portrayed, especially considering this is only 1960. The black character is a completely believable one and likable and seen to be liked by the young girl and eventually even by Miller. The priest (Is this the most sympathetic portrayal of a priest in a Bunuel film?) even offers to stand as witness at any trial. There will be no trial, the fugitive points out to him, showing he has just a little more grasp upon reality. One of the very many highlights in this, for me, was the young girl skipping happily towards the boat with the priest. She is wearing the high heels Miller has given her but she trips gayly along as if playing hopscotch and still, 'just a child'.
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