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John G. Avildsen
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Billy Bob Thornton,
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After a husband is accused of droving his third wife to suicide, his first wife Hedda, a troubled woman who can't hate or hurt others even if they had wronged her, is subpoenaed to testify on his abusive behavior during their marriage.
The daughter of a thief, young Moll is placed in the care of a nunnery after the execution of her mother. However, the actions of an abusive priest lead Moll to rebel as a teenager, escaping to the dangerous streets of London. Further misfortunes drive her to accept a job as a prostitute from the conniving Mrs. Allworthy. It is there that Moll first meets Hibble, who is working as Allworthy's servant but takes a special interest in the young woman's well-being. With his help, she retains hope for the future, ultimately falling in love with an unconventional artist who promises the possibility of romantic happiness. Written by
Morgan Freeman uses his immense talent to give varied facets to Mr. Hibble, Stockard Channing is deliciously evil as Mrs. Allworthy, and Robin Wright Penn shines like a diamond in the role of Moll Flanders. Even the child playing Flora does a charming job with her limited part. Some viewers complained that the film was slow moving, but i felt the transitions from "modern day" to "flashbacks" from the memoir written by the title character kept things moving along quite nicely. Having not read Defoe's book, I cannot compare it to this version, but members here seem about equally divided between hating the movie for not being true to the book, and feeling that the changes made are an improvement on the original. Personally, I'd recommend this movie highly to anyone who has time to watch it.
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