This volume provides a detailed transcription of the 1948 film. Notes appended to the film's continuity script detail all the significant differences between the finished film and the shooting script.
Wexman's introductions to each of the book's sections discuss the history of the film's reception and provide an overview of the central issues the film has raised. A cross section of commentary by well-known critics attests to the film's enduring position as a central text for cinema study. These essays acknowledge the film's significance as a preeminent example of Ophuls's art, as an important woman's film, and as a representative of the classic Hollywood style. A biographical sketch of Ophuls, the entire Zweig novella, a bibliography and other background materials are also included.