The best version of James M. Cain's torrid, hard-hitting romance comes to startling life under Garnett's shrewd direction, surprisingly at MGM. The studio threw in the towel on Turner's sweet parts and let her turn on the blowtorch and expose the seething passions. Although 1946 censors
assured some downplaying of the heat between the leads, from the moment surly Garfield sees the "Man Wanted" sign, and Turner's lipstick rolls tauntingly across the floor, we know we're in for dangerous pulp romance. By the time the camera tilts from Turner's foot to the top of her white-hot
visage, we know what the goods are and that Garfield's horny drifter is sold. If Turner is m...