The Long, Hot Summer

The Long, Hot Summer (Martin Ritt, 1958)

  • 21 Jun 13:06
  • 4 lists

The Long, Hot Summer is a 1958 film directed by Martin Ritt, starring Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Anthony Franciosa, Lee Remick, Angela Lansbury and Orson Welles. It is based on stories by William Faulkner, primarily "The Hamlet," but completely removes the Snopes family.

The film was entered into the 1958 Cannes Film Festival, with Newman winning the award for Best Actor.

Ben Quick hitches a ride to Frenchman's Bend, Mississippi from two young women in a convertible, Clara Varner and her sister-in-law Eula. Clara's father is Will Varner, the domineering owner of most of the town.

Will sees in the brash newcomer a younger version of himself, ruthless and ambitious. These qualities are, in Will's opinion, sadly lacking in his only son Jody.

He is also disappointed with his schoolteacher daughter. Clara's boyfriend, genteel Southern blue blood Alan Stewart, is a mama's boy, not the kind of son-in-law Will wants. He schemes to push his daughter and Ben together, to try to bring fresh, virile blood into the family. She, however, is (seemingly) unimpressed with the crude, if magnetic upstart. Ben at first is attracted by the wealth Will offers, but eventually comes to see something in...


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