Valentine "Snakeskin" Xavier, a trouble-prone drifter trying to go straight, wanders into a small Mississippi town looking for a simple and honest life but finds himself embroiled with problem-filled women.
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After watching this TV-movie on TCM recently, originally produced and aired on its sister network TBS, I couldn't believe that the talents of Vanessa Redgrave and Sidney Lumet created such a poor version of this classic myth. Redgrave, though always beautiful and interesting to watch, is ludicrous as the Italian Lady Torrance. Her accent vacillates between pidgin Italian and cast-upon-the-moors Irish. I couldn't tell what she was saying half the time. Thank God for closed captions. Although I love Redgrave in Blow-Up, Howard's End and Mrs. Dalloway, she was insufferable in this movie. The whole turgid mess was miscast, poorly produced, out-of-focus (literally and figuratively) and just plain awful. And I'm big fan of Tennessee Williams. I had looked forward to watching this movie when I caught it on the TCM schedule, but honestly, if you like Redgrave, Lumet and Williams do yourself a favor and skip this one. It leaves a very bad taste in your mouth, and the tragedy and haunting beauty of the original myth are nowhere to be found.
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