|De Sica and stars|
It was of course scripted by Gore Vidal, that great set was by Oliver Messel, and Mankiewicz put Elizabeth Taylor and Katharine Hepburn through their paces. Monty though seems lost between them, and actually doesnt seem quite with it here, after his near fatal car crash. It seems Mank had little patience with him, which annoyed Hepburn no end, she spat at the director when her role was finished,. She is amazing as Mrs Venable, descending in her lift, feeding her venus fly-traps, and telling the doctor about her poet son Sebastian's last trip last summer when they saw the baby turtles trying to get to the sea while the sky was full of vicious birds devouring them. Sebastian too was devouring - the poor youths he preyed on, using his mother as bait,
and then cousin Catherine Holly (Elizabeth) in that notorious white bathing suit - "why it was a scandal to the jaybirds". No wonder she wants Catherine lobotomised. Taylor in one of her great Tennessee Williams roles is marvellous, the supporting cast includes Mercedes McCambridge (Luz from GIANT, Emma from JOHNNY GUITAR) and Gary Raymond, and Tennessee as usual creates poetry out of mere dialogue.
Next double-feature: Sarah Miles in THE HIRELING and LADY CAROLINE LAMB ...