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Scorchers Review

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It's Splendid's (Lloyd) wedding night and she is vociferously refusing her husband's advances. On the other side of town, her cousin is having the opposite problem, striding into a bar to confront the 'town slut' who is stealing her husband's attentions.

★★★★

The only people likely to get burned by Scorchers are those who financed this piece of folksy drivel depicting events during a long and very hot night in the Louisiana Bayou.

Opening with an extended monologue which is about as stimulating as a 10mg valium, the movie immediately betrays its origins as a claustrophobic and overwritten stage play, also by director-screenwriter Beaird.

The plot, if one can call the rambling set of parallel incidents a plot, is an uncomfortable mix of melodrama, sentimentality and failed farce which finds Emily Lloyd shrieking and screaming as a young Cajun bride who refuses to have sex with her handsome husband (Wilder). While the wedding guests cavort in the garden, Emily's wise old widower dad (Crooke) tries to persuade her that this is a mistake.

In between this tedious and repetitive nonsense, flash to the local bar where landlord James Earl Jones barks and growls at his friend Denholm Elliott, failed actor and town drunk. Enter the town whore, in the person of Faye Dunaway, who has to fend off the abusive insults of distraught Jennifer Tilly whose husband and preacher father are both well acquainted with Faye's warm, wise, witty and womanly embraces.

This vulgar burlesque of every steamy, overheated Southern stew of drama you've ever seen, masquerading as an exercise in spiritual redemption, is a tedious embarrassment in which a bunch of otherwise well-regarded actors make complete idiots of themselves, and Lloyd demonstrates yet again that noise is her forte.

Vulgar burlesque that is embarrassingly bad and makes complete fools of all it's actors. Watch it at your peril.