Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.
USA, 1964. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Screenplay by John Huston, based on the play by Cinematography by Produced by Ray Stark. Music by Benjamin Frankel. Production Design by Stephen B. Grimes. Costume Design by Dorothy Jeakins. Film Editing by Ralph Kemplen. Academy Awards 1964. Golden Globe Awards 1964.
A one-time pastor () finds himself working as a tour guide in Mexico after having been removed from his church following a sex scandal. His latest tour is a group of American schoolteachers, the leader of whom is a scary tyrant ( ) who makes sure that Burton never gets anywhere near her gorgeous, young and blonde charge ( ). It doesn’t help the situation that Lyon is a complete nymphomaniac who is constantly trying to seduce Burton when no one is looking. Burton decides to show the ladies up by taking them to a friend’s resort instead of the one they paid for, but they turn tail and run, leaving him alone with his old friend ( ). More visitors arrive in the form of and her ailing poet grandfather, leading to an emotionally violent night full of confessions and arguments where these two women lead Burton to a new turning point in his life. The screenplay, based on the play by Tennessee Williams, is well-written with excellent dialogue brought to life by great performances, but as an entertainment it’s pretty stale. Kerr is perfectly lovely (was she ever anything else?) and Gardner is astounding in her fiery intensity.