Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Sanctuary, sanctuary ...

Fascinating to catch up now with THE STORY OF TEMPLE DRAKE, the first movie version of William Faulkner's novel SANCTUARY, it makes for a terrific 70 minute Pre-Code movie, directed by Stephen Roberts in 1933, with Miriam Hopkins in full throttle as that spoilt, selfish tease Temple, wno thinks she can flirt and control her men, until she is held captive by bootleggers and raped by Jack Le Rue, and Temple finds she likes it ... eventually back home she has to testify about what really happened and who killed Trigger (La Rue) which will show her up in her true light. Miriam of course went on to VANITY FAIR in 35, the first colour main movie, and appearing a few times with her rival Bette Davis and she was very effective in later roles, mainly for Wyler, in films like THE HEIRESS, CARRIE and THE CHILDREN'S HOUR. Many indeed are the stories of her feuds with Davis and others... I particularly relish 1943's OLD ACQUAINTANCE, a delirious treat anytime.

Fascinating too to compare with the 1960 version SANCTUARY, long unseen here, directed by Tony Richardson as his first venture in Hollywood, with Lee Remick perfect as Temple and Yves Montand doing an impersonation of La Rue. Here is what I said about it last year:

"Also long unseen here, is Tony Richardson’s 1961 film of SANCTUARY which I had wanted to catch up with for Lee Remick’s performance as Temple Drake. Bradford Dillman plays her husband and Yves Montand (fresh from Marilyn Monroe and LET’S MAKE LOVE) as the bootlegger Candyman who rapes her. Blues singer Odetta is also in the cast. Remick is as fascinating as ever as the tease who takes to sex and booze, and that remote to us now 20s era of flappers and the Charleston is well conveyed. The story is bizarre though with the death of the baby – again, perhaps a reading of the book would be useful. An odd choice though for director Tony Richardson. Montand has a great 'look' with the hat and the cigarette, but back then the English language continued to defeat him. Remick though is the reason to see this, with lots of lingering close-ups of her."

Soon: the real Jeanne Eagels in THE LETTER in 1929, also compared to Bette's in 1940 and Lee Remick's in 1982, and Kim Novak as Jeanne in the 1957 meller JEANNE EAGELS

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