Ah, the days when filmmakers had to be creative.
I'm not talking about cinematics but content. However, in this case, cinematics and content are irrevocably intertwined. In bringing William Inge's seminal play of longing to the screen (by way of Daniel Taradash's fine screenplay), director Joshua Logan faced the challenge of having the piece's star-crossed lovers - stumble-bum Hal and small-town queen Madge - be intimate with actually showing them engaging in sex.
He shrewdly solved the problem with a dance that has become an iconic screen moment, even though is lasts only a few minutes.
Swooning and gyrating to "Moonglow" and "The Theme from 'Picnic,'" expertly intertwined by composer George Duning, stars William Holden and Kim Novak seem to be improvising their choreographed sex act. But, in actuality, the dance was overseen by the very clever choreographer, Miriam Nelson, who for some bizarre reason was never credited.
Nevertheless, what she created in 1955 fairly drips with passion.
The number: “Moonglow”/”Theme from ‘Picnic’”
The composer: George Duning
The choreographer: Miriam Nelson
The dancers: William Holden and Kim Novak
The cinematographer: James Wong Howe
The film editors: William A. Lyon and Charles Nelson
The production designer: Jo Mielziner