I was split on where to go with this pick.
Then, I began thinkin’ about all the storms we’ve had my way lately, sweat burning my forehead in the evening and a lid over the sky shutting in all the heat and humidity. Most appropriate then, my favorite work centered on Southern society:
A movie just as steamy as the day it was released over half a century ago. I first watched it a dark summer night, parked in the recliner, fan noisily waving overhead–I couldn’t have picked a better day. The tension in this one just builds and builds like no other, culminating in one hell of a climax.
You’d think I’d be tired of saying it by now, but Mr. Perfect, Paul Newman, is, well, perfect. And Elizabeth Taylor– gracious sakes, Elizabeth Taylor… this is the flick that made me understand what all the hubbub was about. The supporting players all hit it pitch-perfect with Burl Ives’ fervid, thunderous ‘Big Daddy’ tying it all together.
Apparently there was some controversy at the time of the film’s release; fans of the stage version argued the movie cut back on some of the more racy material. I feel the material is actually better served as such as the content in question is still very much alive in the cinematic adaptation, only in more suggestive and subtextual ways that only strengthen the tense atmosphere felt throughout.