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Politics are already strained between English imperialists and the West African government of Kinjanja, when womanizing British diplomat Morgan Leafy (Colin Friels) is caught in bed with Celia (Joanne Whalley-Kilmer), wife of corrupt Kinjanjan presidential candidate Sam Adekunle (Academy Award winner Louis Gossett Jr.). As punishment, Leafy is forced into bribing an official who has voted down a project that stands to make Adekunle very rich. Leafy thinks he's gotten off easy until he learns the lone holdout is none other than Kinjanja's own brick wall of integrity, Dr. Alex Murray (Connery). Meanwhile, Leafy must also contend with his absurdly stuffy boss Fanshawe (John Lithgow), Fanshawe's lusty wife (Diana Rigg) and their luscious, too friendly daughter! Written by
William Boyd is a good writer and verges on greatness at times but this film seems to suffer from too much money and talent, but not enough effort.
The book is funny. The naive Englishman Mr. Leafy tries to navigate through African politics and colonial interests. There are some interesting sexual subplots and classic scenes of trousers down British farce but the film loses all the subtlety and parody.
Sean Connery appears. He has a supporting role which threatens to overbalance the film, he stops the plot in its tracks.
Write William Write ! If I catch you behind a camera again, I'll pull out the plug and sit you down behind a typewriter until you come up with something as great as The New Confessions.
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