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The Favorite (1989)

At the dawn of the 19th century, a young French woman is kidnapped and forced into a sultan's harem in Turkey. Fiercely independent, she resists, but must make choices in order to survive. ... See full summary »



(novel) (as Prince Michael), (screenplay)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Abdul Hamid
Amber O'Shea ...
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry
James Michael Gregary ...
Ron Dortch ...
Laurent Le Doyen ...
Jonathan Vuille ...
Young Mahmud
Adult Mahmud
Andréa Parisy ...
Gérard Touroul ...
Tom McGreevey ...
Uncle (as Thomas McGreevey)
Celeste Simpson-Boyd ...
Robere Kazadi ...
Garth Wilton ...
British Consul


At the dawn of the 19th century, a young French woman is kidnapped and forced into a sultan's harem in Turkey. Fiercely independent, she resists, but must make choices in order to survive. She begins to influence the sultan toward more fair manners of solving his conflicts, but finds herself at odds with another of his wives, who wants her son Mustafa to become the new sultan. As the years pass, she must deal with the new sultan's advances while protecting her adopted son Mahmud, and helping the Sultanate against the Russians who have modern weapons. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He stole her innocence. She stole his heart....and his empire.




R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

9 August 1989 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Intimate Power  »

Filming Locations:

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Sound Mix:


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Did You Know?


The story is only a legend and not rooted in historical fact See more »


Selim: He kisses Aimee and says I love you. What's wrong?
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry: I can't stop thinking about him.
Selim: Who?
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry: Who? That boy.
Selim: They had the right to do it. The genesaries guard the bazaar.
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry: Nobody has the right to do that. Destroy the cruelty. Get rid of them.
Selim: How do you suggest I do that hmm? My uncle tried and so has every sultan for the past 200 years.
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry: The Russians kill many with their guns. Why can't you just get modern weapons like the russians have?
Selim: Who would ask Russians for their guns?
Aimée Dubucq de Rivéry: Don't make fun of me? ...
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User Reviews

Should be high on lists of Worsts
19 June 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

What I saw was a throwback to cliché-cluster flicks of decades ago, but the soundtrack puts it firmly in the eighties.

It is thumpingly and enormously awful, as wretched and phony a film as could be conceived. Tittering harem ladies a'bathing, stern Turks delivering script bits from the 100 Most Popular Stock Lines for the genre. They might as well have gone beyond the scattered skin peeks to a fuller soft-core intention -- all pillow-plush and pleasures in the sultan's palace, because that's already the quality/ambiance/performance level of much of this thin 'n cheesy production.

The producers may have scored the perfectly suited shooting location, but much else in the movie seems to be reaching for the furthest reaches of inauthenticity.

Admissions: There is amusement, even delight, in encountering something so consummately lame, in wondering who could work on it and think for a moment this embarrassment should be taken seriously. I really did laugh out loud a few times at this painfully acted, double-dreadfully written, obliviously directed caricature. Maybe I WOULD view a portion of it again, preferably with someone else. "Look!...watch this! Watch!"

And..I only made it through the early half. Turned away easily without even the tiniest rhinestone of regret. (A bug buzzing by in the living room could be diversion enough from this bungle.) Could be...could be that when it moved deeper into violence and intrigue, into dramatic seizures(!) of fate and steering of history, it took a turn toward something more engaging and more plausibly presented. Could happen...right?

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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