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Harriet, now an adult, narrates the story of her coming of age growing up as a British national and a daughter of a jute press manager in the Bengal region of India, they living in the big house on the banks of one of the holy rivers. At the time, she is the eldest of six siblings - five girls and one boy - with another on the way and with she being significantly older the rest of her siblings. As such, she spends much time with an honorary member of their family, a late teen - not quite an adult - named Valerie, also a British national and the daughter of the jute press owner. Another friend, who recently arrived home from her western schooling, is Melanie, the biracial daughter of British national Mr. John and his then deceased Hindu wife. Both Mr. John and Melanie realize her difficult position, straddling both the Hindi and western cultures. Their small world is shaken up with the arrival of Captain John, Mr. John's cousin and an American ex-military man who has one prosthetic leg... Written by
In Bengal, India, the teenager Harriet (Patricia Walters) is the oldest daughter of a British family composed by her father (Esmond Knight) that lost one eye in the war and is the manager of a jute factory; her mother (Nora Swinburne) that is pregnant; and her four younger sisters and one little brother. They have a quiet and comfortable life living in a big house nearby the Ganges River. Valerie (Adrienne Corri) is the teenage daughter the owner of the jute factory where Harriet's father works that spends most of her time with Harriet. Melanie is the British-Indian daughter of Harriet's neighbor Mr. John (Arthur Shields) that has just returned from an education in England. When the young American Captain John (Thomas E. Breen) that lost one of his legs in the war comes to Bengal to visit his cousin Mr. John, the three teenagers fall in love for him.
"The River" is a story of first love in the exotic India and metaphorically compares the Ganges River with the flow of life with the lead character leaving her childhood and becoming an adolescent. The screenplay of this romance has many beautiful quotes, but excessive narrative from a grown-up Harriet. The cinematography is stunning, with the use of bright colors in the environment of India. Thomas E. Breen performs an outcast character that has a great complex due to the loss of one of his legs but he does not transmit this feeling to the audience. The red-haired Adrienne Corri is a very beautiful young woman that gives credibility to her sixteen year-old character. The Brazilian DVD was released by Continental Distributor. My vote is six.
Title (Brazil): "O Rio Sagrado" ("The Sacred River")
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