In the Deep South at the dawn of the twentieth century, Regina Giddens (Davis) and her leech-like brothers shamelessly steal from her kindly, wealthy husband Horace (Marshall) to invest in a cotton mill, while the poor man recuperates from heart problems. When Horace eventually discovers the theft, Regina covers her tracks in the most treacherous way possible. Inevitably, she becomes the victim of her own consuming greed.
Adapted from Lillian Hellman's Broadway smash, the third and final collaboration between director William Wyler and leading lady Davis, again playing a viper in petticoats, is a juicy, riveting drama for the ages. Davis was never so wicked, playing Regina to the icy hilt (Tallulah Bankhead had famously originated the role on Broadway). A fabulous cast and authentic 1900s detail bring Hellman's loathsome characters to vivid life. Is this what they mean by Southern hospitality?