Lady Booby alias "Belle" (Ann-Margret), the lively wife of the fat landed squire Sir Thomas Booby (Peter Bull), has a lusty eye on the attractive, intelligent villager Joseph Andrews (Peter...
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Lady Booby alias "Belle" (Ann-Margret), the lively wife of the fat landed squire Sir Thomas Booby (Peter Bull), has a lusty eye on the attractive, intelligent villager Joseph Andrews (Peter Firth), a Latin pupil and protégé of Parson Adams (Sir Michael Hordern), and makes him their footman. Joseph's heart belongs to a country girl, foundling Fanny Goodwill (Natalie Ogle), but his masters take him on a fashionable trip to Bath, where the spoiled society comes mainly to see and be seen, yet Sir Thomas really seeks relief for his sick foot, but drowns in the famous Roman baths. When the all but grieving lady finds Joseph's Christian virtue and true love resist her lusting passes just as well as the many ladies who fancy her footman, she fires the boy. On his way back on foot, he falls prey to highwaymen who rob him of everything, even the clothes on his back. He's found and nursed by an innkeeper's maid, which stirs lusts there, again besides his honorable conduct, but is found by the ...Written by
There's one or two disturbing moments in this film, but overall a very British earthiness is apparent in the rhythm, tone, and incidents of the film. The costumes and make-up are both a delight and (as best I know) historically accurate. Not that they're always wearing costumes.... Lots of top notch English actors (Peter Firth, young - and ludicrously pretty - here, hasn't stopped since). The reversals of fortune probably owe more to Fielding than the scriptwriter, and are a reminder that soap opera has a long history, under whatever name. -- For those who don't understand the term "double entendre", the shot of Ann-Margret's character lovingly swallowing the full length of an asparagus dipped in oil should about clear it up.
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