Harem (1986)

Here we have the bodice-ripper on view, a romance novel on TV.  Or at least that what the title and locale would lead one to expect.  Owing a lot to “The Sheik,” some 60+ years old by the time “Harem” was made, both long out of fashion and not a very good movie itself, there’s something exceedingly puerile in its zeal to make us wonder whether Western or Eastern culture has it better.  David Lean’s extraordinary “A Passage to India” had been filmed only a few years before, winning Oscars and applause, and set the standard for this sort of story for at least the rest of the decade.  If “Harem” weren’t so unintentionally stupid and easy to laugh at, it would be exceedingly boring. 

Before the movie starts, we’re treated to a two sentence history of the Ottoman Empire, now in its decline.  And then this: “It was also at this time that there were reports of foreign women being kidnapped and sold into the Sultan’s Harem.  Suddenly forced into a kind of life and culture they never knew existed, their safety always in question–these western women were force to live on eastern terms.” 

Forget being astoundingly politically incorrect even by 1986, forget this image of the lily white innocent virgin being conscripted into the sensual life of the Orient a cliche by 1886, so much so that even great authors were spoofing it (read a “Passage to India” if you don’t believe me), let alone 1986, forget the bad grammar, is this sentence meant to be frightening or funny?  Let’s let the movie tell us.

The leading lady is a problem right off the bat.  First, it’s Nancy Travis, a perpetual B-list actress without the sparkle to pull off this part.  Second, before she even speaks a word, this early 20th Century gal is riding a horse and shooting with the men, an anomaly to her class and stature, and obviously something of oddity even to her fiance, Julian Sands.  Nancy’s family are a prim British lot (though Nancy lacks the accent everyone else displays because, as we’re told in a line inserted into the script no doubt after a stab at the accent, her dead mother was American), with her aunt so worried about the number of settings and bridesmaids and propriety and her father eating hardboiled eggs with a fork and knife.  All of this makes her ideal as a 1980s heroine, but completely wrong for a period piece. 

Nancy harbors romantic notions of what marriage is like.  She asks Aunt Lily (Georgine Anderson) what marriage is like, and the veddy veddy terse response is, “you’ll get used to it.”  She then asks Julian to kiss her during a dance and their noses get in the way.  I would say she had been reading too many romance novels, but she doesn’t strike me as the reading type. 

Julian is called to Damascus on diplomatic business, which means having to postpone the wedding.  Nancy is disappointed (she drops her head, that’s how we know), but Julian proposes getting married at the embassy in Constantinople.  I hope someone wires the embassy! 

Cue the camels, we’ve hit the Orient (as they called it back then).  On the train, Julian introduces Nancy to Sarah Miles, as Lady Ashley, “the most famous Englishwoman in Damascus.”  Our gang hasn’t even gotten off the train when a gaggle of Bedouins go rushing by in burnooses, shooting from their horses, forcing the train to stop.  The board the train, one particularly excited by virginal Nancy Travis, though perhaps it’s Julian Sands they are after.  He’s far prettier.  There follows a political discourse between Sarah and Julian, offensive to just about every culture on earth at the time, but making a stab at sympathizing with the Turkish rebels who want to overthrow the Sultan. 

The Turkish soldiers are a pretty nasty lot, killing a woman from the rebel camp in order to push someone to answer for the raid on the train.  Their leader is Art Malik, as Tarik Pasha, a fairly handsome man who wants peace for his people.  His aide tells him what they need to do is bargain with the Sultan for their freedom, but Art has nothing.  So, they must get “what the Sultan wants most.”  If you’ve seen the cover of an East-meets-West romance novel,  you’ll know that is a blonde virgin.

Said virgin and her equally virginal husband show up at Sarah’s to find Bedouins at her home, relatives on her husband’s side.  She foreshadows the whole plot by telling them that there is “still a touch of chivalry” among these misunderstood people.  It seems Sarah’s only purpose is to give society lessons of this new culture.  Nancy is transfixed by the theory of “to be, to do, or have.”  She asks Sarah which she prefers.  “Only when  you have tasted the desert stillness can you know what it really is, just to be.”  Eh?  Run that by me again.  I guess it will make sense once Nancy is captured by the Sult…oops, getting ahead of myself.  She’s already beginning to change, questioning life, which upsets Julian. 

In an outfit missing everything but a Baedeker hanging from it, Nancy trundles off to see some ruins with an elderly woman “wearing very sensible shoes,” as Sarah puts it (in modern parlance, a lesbian).  The guide is Art’s henchman, so the plan is falling into place.  The rebels come riding into town and Nancy grabs a knife, which doesn’t help when she’s pulled up on a horse and carried away.  She lobs questions at Art, thankfully without Valentino’s snorting nasal passages, who speaks perfect English, having been educated in England (we learned that a few scenes ago).  Art is, naturally, immediately in love with Nancy, even giving her privacy when he insists she change into Bedouin dress.  Miss Ahead-of-her-time fancy pants tells Art she doesn’t know how to ride, to throw him off, and then mounts a horse perfectly and dashes off.  He’s better at the horse thing, so she doesn’t get far. 

The Great Sultan is played by Omar Sharif,  a rare Arab role for the Egyptian-born erstwhile star of “Lawrence of Arabia” where he did play an Arab (he played an awful lot of Russians, and of course Jewish Nicky Arnstein in “Funny Girl”).  A miniseries icon, Omar Sharif is here not just an Arab ruler, but a diplomat, wearing Western clothing and worrying about the rebels.  His aide Agha, played by Yaphet Kotto, phoning it in BIG TIME!  But, Yaphet knows the way to Omar’s mind and heart is through his harem. 

Nancy doesn’t know it, but her world gets a bit smaller when her father dies in his sleep before finding her.  Now it’s up to Julian, and that’s not a rosy prospect.

Art takes Nancy to Yaphet, who knows her worth, trading her for 20 prisoners.  Nancy still wants to know what the hell is going on (it’s a fair question for her character and anyone still watching), but Art doesn’t tell her.  Autocrat tells a captured British writer what he’s allowed to discuss in his books: the Sultan is great, the rebels are bad, the weather is terrific.  This is the message he wants sent to the rest of the world.  Nancy shows up right after this tirade, entering the harem of beautiful women who all seem completely happy.  Yaphet warns her that she can try to escape and face death, or learn to like the world and enjoy it.  She’s not convinced when another girl tells her how much of an honor it is to be in the Sultan’s harem, and that it has many pleasures.  The only bit of good news is that she doesn’t have to worry about rape, since Yaphet and all the other men are eunuchs. 

Nancy is brought to the head of the harem, played by (and I hope your chair has arms to grab onto) Ava Gardner.  Yup, Ava Gardner.  Not only is she the slumming vet, but this was her last movie.  As the Sultan’s wife, she looks far older than her years, but there’s still a flash of her legendary beauty there.  Ava pronounces naked Nancy “ordinary,” but Yaphet and harem plotter Cherie Lunghi have decided they can work the Sultan through her and Cherie begs Ava for Nancy.  Yeah, whatever, Ava says, no doubt killing time until the guy with the drink tray arrives.

A boat full of European finery arrives, much to the glee of the harem girls, and Cherie begins Nancy’s training.  Cherie sees Nancy as sexually frustrated.  “This is a matter of manners, not morals,” she says, spouting a Western ism with an unnatural flair.  Meanwhile, Ava goes to Omar, begging him not to take the girls that night.  He brushes her off with, “you gave me a son, that’s enough.”  How long ago was that?  Certainly not the recent past!  The kid has to be collecting Turkish social security.  Geez, she’s been pining a super long time.

Then comes the most ridiculous scene yet, because right as we’re starting to think perhaps the values of the East aren’t so bad, the harem girls give Omar a fashion show in Western dress.  Yup, a fashion show, complete with posing and turning to show off their finery.  It’s made even more ridiculous by Art giving a stirring speech right after, talking about dying children and starving people and breaking the “chain of oppression,” time to fight.  He’s the greatest political speaker ever if you go by the number of extra hired to cheer him on, but he’s shot right after the climax or his oratory.  He’s not dead, don’t worry.

In fact, his arm is in a sling when he tries to convert David Gant, a high-level Turkish soldier with rebel leanings.  He wants David (who would have been a better choice for the romantic lead, if you ask me) to join his side with all the other soldiers, but an answer to that will have to wait.

More important, apparently, is a trip to the marketplace arranged for Nancy by Cherie and Yaphet.  Nancy knocks Cherie over and makes a dash through the bazaar.  Certainly no one will notice the blonde lady dressed in the burnoose.  Sadly for her, she gets her costume trapped on a basket (and is apparently not stronger than wicker), only to be caught by a man who promises to return her to Julian at the embassy.  Unfortunately for her (and the story), he turns her in to Yaphet instead. 

Ava, in a marabou muumuu, confronts one of the girls who is pregnant.  “Who is the father?” Ava nefariously asks.  The girl says of course the Sultan is the father.  She is protected from harm because her name was inscribed in the great book of Omar’s conquests  Ava, the muumuu unwrapped to reveal a costume that looks about 400 years out of fashion, has removed her name from the great book, which makes the woman’s baby a bastard, and Ava has her drowned in front of the harem.  It’s too much for Nancy to bear, but Cheri and Yaphet use it as a teaching moment: “this is what happens to unprotected girls,” they tell her.  Take a lesson, ladies: don’t follow the rules and you have to share a scene with an overacting gorgon, and not just that, only she gets shot in soft focus.  You get full lights!

Nancy gives in and Cherie starts the training again.  As we hear Cherie spouting Ottoman fortune cookie sentences about learning to accept one’s body, Nancy toys with nudity, different fabrics, baths with rose petals, and splish splashing with other girls.  She kind of digs it and Cherie pronounces her ready to be seen by Omar, though not bedded by him yet.  Cherie teaches more, as Nancy stands around gyrating her arms and learning about jewels. 

You may be wondering what happened to Julian.  Oh, he’s been looking for her and provided she’s being stashed in the embassy, he’ll find her, because he hasn’t ventured out any further than his bedroom, the yutz.  The ambassador refuses to help him until there is proof that the Sultan has him.  Omar gives a great party and his girls entertain the British.  Julian shows a flash of gumption and almost invades the harem where Omar has gone to watch all of his girls drop their veils.  He goes over to Nancy, who hasn’t dropped hers (though it’s sheer, so there’s nothing not shown) and when she goes, Omar all but pounces, much to Ava’s chagrin.  She’s now IN as far as harem girls go.  She is on call whenever he wants. 

With Cherie preaching yet again, this time about how aphrodisiacs are stupid and it’s all about a woman’s charms, Sarah pops by to visit her pal Ava, in the hopes of spotting Nancy and helping Julian.  Sarah speaks of “kidnappings” to bring new girls to the harem, but Ava ends that conversation quickly.  “When I was the Sultan’s favorite…” is the way Cherie begins EVERY sentence, and then follows it with an annoying bit of harem wisdom.  Nancy is on the verge of getting them sick of them, until Cherie mentions it might be the way to her freedom.  Sarah sees Nancy on the way out and Nancy is bereft, and Cherie tells her not think about her.  The Sultan is her “only hope.”  At the speed Omar moves, that’s a long shot. 

The ambassador does not want to move quickly, instead trying to please the Sultan with presents.  He has to be politic about things, on two accounts: first, the Sultan has no interest in the British, who are afraid of him and second, the ambassador is worried that Nancy is now deflowered and not fit for society.  Sarah suggests to Julian that Art can help, if Julian pays him.  There’s a fun little twist: the man who put her in the harem now has to get her out.  Art agrees.  After all, it’s a lot of money.  “It will end in either freedom or death,” Art boasts to Julian, who is a bit wishy-washy about the plan. 

Only eunuchs are allowed in the Sultan’s palace, and the local doctor says he can make Art one and have him in the palace in a month, but Art is the hero, he ain’t gettin’ anything chopped off!  He bribes the doctor to lie and say he’s a eunuch so he can get inside ASAP, which is a good thing because Nancy is summoned to Omar’s chamber that night.  With half of the movie still left to go, this is going to be one looooooong game to get her out.  But, remember, Nancy is kind of liking the massages and pretty clothes, so she seems less in a hurry than even two scenes ago. 

They doll Nancy up in ropes of pearls all over her body and a rather unflattering outfit, but a make-up job straight out of, well, 1986.  She’s missing only shoulder pads for her walk-on in party scene on “Dynasty.”  However, when she trots off to the Sultan, she’s removed all the jewels, the fabulous gown and most of her make-up, opting instead of what seems to be a maternity gown.  As she’s led to the Sultan, she spots Art among the eunuchs and the look on his face doesn’t say, “I’m here to free you,” but rather, “I’m here to do you.”

Nancy bows to Omar, happy with his hookah, and forget to unbow.  “Are you going to watch the floor for the rest of the evening?” he asks.  Nancy decides to be honest with Omar, who is disarmed by her.  He then shows her a picture of Teddy Roosevelt and they discuss him a bit.  He asks her about her small-town upbringing, not understanding what a “front porch” is.  “You’ve never been to America!  You should go,” she says.  Unfortunately, he’s never left the palace.  His spies tell him everything, what does he need to go out for?  And there we have it, the sympathy card.  He’s just as much a prisoner as she is.  Well, kind of.  He is the Sultan and she’s a harem girl.  He beckons her to bed, but she bravely suggests that if she shag then and now, it will only be on command, not because she wants him.  She wants to be wooed.  So, they spend the night laughing by the window.  In the morning, she’s still a virgin, and Cherie reminds her, “true power comes only after making love to a man.”  Wait, she never said that before!  Nancy figured that out all by herself, somehow. 

In the softest focus yet, Ava has a scene (shot through plants no less, because Art is lurking behind them) where she worries about Nancy taking the Sultan’s love from her.  This is a rather bizarre scene because we’ve seen how Ava dispenses with the other girls, why should Nancy be any different?  Yaphet catches Art spying and vows his loyalty to Yaphet, who gets him a job as Nancy’s personal bodyguard.  They quarrel like all movie characters who don’t yet know they are in love and the reveals to her that he was sent by her fiance, who by the way, is spending his time in the embassy being insulted by British ladies who think Nancy is with the Sultan because she wants to be. 

Omar turns to Nancy to help him make political decisions.  OH, COME ON!  Now we’ve moved beyond “The Sheik” and gone to “The King and I,” but Omar is too shady to be the King of Siam and Nancy too bland to be either Mrs. Anna or Tuptim.  Just Art and Nancy are about to escape, Yaphet, in his American accent, arrives with Omar, who doesn’t want an orgy, just some alone time with his new favorite.  “How am I to court you?” he petulantly asks Nancy, who admits to being uninterested in jewels or gowns.  He offers to make her a second wife, but she reminds him that in America, a man can have only one wife, but he doesn’t care about that, so she tries another stumbling block.  “If we were married, I would want to be a virgin on my wedding night” and Omar says he wants an experienced gal.  “This Western courtship is beginning to bore me,” Omar sighs, but before the conversation can go further, Omar is informed that the rebels are at the palace gates.  Indeed, not only the rebels, but the soldiers.  The Sultan’s men fire on the crowd, killing a giant number of unarmed men, much to the consternation of some of the palace guards.  Omar refuses to believe there is a problem, but Art tells Nancy his men are inside the palace and it is impossible for anyone to escape.  Oh, and he’ll sleep in her bedroom that night for protection.  That’s convenient (though nothing happens). 

The next morning, Ava looks like she’s nursing the empire’s biggest hangover as she plots to have Nancy killed.  Luckily, Art is there and can fight off the two assassins who have come in clown make-up and fezzes to murder her.  I can’t explain the make-up, but my guess is it’s unused budget.  Since this movie has only two sets and it seems the harem girls provided their own costumes, “Harem” cost only Ava’s martini budget and a few incidentals, so by the time this scene was filmed, there was cash at hand (this movie looks like it was filmed for about $437 at a time when every large miniseries was claiming to be the most expensive ever filmed).

At a council of ministers, Nancy offers up her opinion, in the form of questions, much to the horror of Yaphet and Ava and the rest (well, not horror, since none of them care to register that much emotion), and Omar actually asks for Nancy’s advice.  She even defends him to Art, who ask her to “join the revolutionaries.”  She refuses and now the would-be lovers have another argument.  Nancy thinks she can be more powerful on the inside as the Sultan’s “conscience,” a new idea she’s taught him, but Art wants her to be on the side of freedom.  She scoffs at him as the man who got her into this predicament, thus assuring the movie at least an extra hour when it could be wrapped up in ten minutes.

Omar takes Nancy out of the palace, his first time out, to visit his realm.  He and Nancy even dress up as plain old folks to visit the marketplace.  No one recognized him?  He is the Sultan and his image would be everywhere, to say nothing of rebels following his every move.  They visit some holy men (actual whirling dervishes, to be exact), and though Yaphet brings Nancy to watch, he tells her politics don’t involve her.  His character is maddeningly inconsistent.  What the hell side is he on? 

The Sultan decides to crush the rebellion and suddenly Nancy realizes the autocratic way is wrong, so she dashes back to Art to tell him the secret plans.  If that were followed by a climactic fight scene, it might be exciting, but instead we have a tender scene where Art explains how he became a rebel (dead mother took bullets for him, dignity in life, all that nonsense), and of course delivered at dusk to have the most beautiful lighting possible.  In the morning, one of Nancy’s ladies brings in breakfast to find Art and Nancy have slept way too close together in the room to be proper.  Even worse, Ava has summoned her.

What’s Ava been up to?  She’s cutting off her hair to mix it in potions.  On her way to Ava, Nancy takes secret plans to smuggle out of the palace on a riverboat excursion where Cherie tells Nancy she has to sleep with Omar or risk losing his interest.  Art is the boatman, so he’s not at all happy.  For Nancy’s meeting with Ava, Sarah is there as well.  They have to pretend they don’t know each other as Sarah peppers Nancy with leading questions, though she seems to realize Nancy has changed and may not be the same woman who was stolen from Julian.  She gives her a jewel and the secret plans to smuggle out.  The harem girls dance to ragtime (where did they ever get records and learn the dance) as Ava poisons Nancy’s coffee.  The plan backfires when Nancy refuses the coffee and Cherie ends up drinking it.

Dimwit Julian is confused by the note Sarah has brought to him from Nancy.  He can’t believe she wrote the note, but Sarah convinces him to trust her and then goes off to relay a response.  Julian is doubly horrified that she is involved in politics.  From the onset, she’s been involved in everything!

Dying is not quick for Cherie, who hacks up a lot and then tells Nancy that there is a poison untraceable in cold coffee (not just any coffee, cold coffee), and she got it by the river.  “It was meant for me,” Nancy says.  It took that long to figure it out, huh?  “It was meant for all of us,” Cherie says and dies.  Feeling guilty and touched by all the people she has met at the harem (which would include only Cherie and Art who have been nice to her), she needs to stay put and send Art off to his men.  “Come back for me,” she says and then they gaze longingly at each other.  I guess the kiss will have to wait. 

Art rushes to David, who still may or may not be loyal to the cause, but there is no way into his palace.  But, if they can draw the Sultan out…yeah, you get it!  There is some tripe about rebellious Armenians and they can use them to get the Sultan’s forces from the palace.  But what of the women and children (we have yet to see a child in this whole movie) who might be killed?  Well, “people die in revolutions” is the rationale David gives.  Everyone buys it without thinking, but they still don’t know if David will join the cause.  Art has to make a side trip back to the palace to save Nancy, because he doesn’t want her dying in the siege.  This annoys his companions, who haven’t had to think about Art in love before. 

When he does return, he gets the royal treatment.  She bathes his feet, lights candles, the whole shebang.  Ava even lets them borrow the soft focus lenses for their big kiss so it looks extra romantic.  With cascading violins, Art helps Nancy lose that pesky virginity.

But there is a problem.  Ava has apparently noticed her special cameras have been taken and she’s standing in the doorway when Nancy and Art awake.  “Stupid…stupid girl!” Ava oozes.  She’s taken to Omar and Ava insists that she be drowned.  Yaphet says that hasn’t been done for years, but Ava says the Sultan hasn’t been betrayed for years.  In front of everyone (and notice that Omar is wearing a Western suit, because his Sultan gowns would make Eastern ways too evil), the Sultan has Art whipped.  Art lies, saying he’s a spy and he raped Nancy, but Ava says, “he’s lying.  She was clinging to him like a LOVER!”  There’s a problem with that lie and Omar, for the first time in the movie, is smart enough to figure something out.  “If this man is telling the truth, you should want him dead,” he tells Nancy, saying that she holds his life in her hands.  As he’s being strangled, she finally stops it all with a big howl and that crying without tears that only actresses and cloying babies can manage. 

Though Yaphet sympathizes with her, he has to oversee Nancy’s death.  She is placed in a burlap sack filled with rocks to be tossed into the sea.  He’s careful to not actually tie the top of the sack in the hopes that she can wriggle out of it somehow.  Her trip to the bottom of the Bosporus is charming.  There are dozens of sacks with bones.  But, Nancy gets out of her sack and kicks her way up where she’s picked up by a ship of men, one of whom pipes in, “I was sure she was a Mermaid for sure.”  In a naval pinafore, she’s reunited with Julian, though with a hug, not a kiss.  She asks to see her father.  Ooooh, riiiiiiight, um, yeah, someone has to tell her he’s dead.  Before that happens, she and Julian have to have the discussion of whether or not they still love each other.  She tries her best to worm out of it, but Julian swears he can forgive her anything she’s done.  Only then does he tell her papa ain’t no more. 

Sarah chides Nancy for walking around the embassy in a nightgown.  “It’s not very British, you know.”  Nancy has gotten used to the loose clothing.  She then decides she has to go to rescue Art, owing him a debt, promising that she’ll be back to spend the rest of her lifetime with Julian (yikes, she would be better off dying with Art in the attack on the palace).  She dashes off to the camp of his friends, but they can’t risk sending anyone to the palace, so Nancy begs to go herself, because who knows the palace better than she does?  One of the men suggests she knows only the harem, and he’s not wrong, because remember, we’ve only ever seen the harem.  The set budget didn’t include the rest of the palace.  Nancy is given a soldier’s uniform, but warned to forget Art, because his only loyalty is to his country and cause.  Apparently no one but Nancy and Art ever read a romance novel.  As she’s about to leave, the camp is surrounded…by David’s men.  Yes, he’s joined the rebels!  You doubters who didn’t think he would, shame on you!  Everyone always goes to the side of good before it’s too late when up against an autocracy.  DUH!

Nancy sneaks into the palace dressed as a soldier, a mute soldier, the clever little thing!  She finds her way to Art’s cell, revealing herself to him “as a dream.”  Only a man stuck in a cell ready to die would have that dream, but these two are goofy in love for each other.  Art is chained in a box and paraded through the city as a warning to anyone hiding rebels.  No one in the city helps.  That’s going to be a problem for the Sultan, in the long run.  The executioner goes to cut off Art’s head, but instead cuts off his shackles.  It’s Nancy! We should have guessed something like this would happen because every time the executioner has been shown, it’s been with a black mask.  Now the rebels come out from everywhere, surround the Sultan’s loyal men and there is a ton of happiness.  “You lead us to the palace, you have earned the right,” they tell Nancy, now apparently Joan of Arc.

Omar and Ava are caught seemingly unaware (well, Ava wasn’t aware of much by 1986) and the rebels storm the palace.  Ava is led away by the guards, looking at Nancy with a look that says, “I’ll get you, my pretty one!”  Yaphet asks Omar what his plans are…only to find out he actually has plans because he’s always waiting for revolution.  Art and Nancy find him in his throne room waiting peacefully, except for the machine guns he had installed behind him, operated by a control from his throne.  Nancy has forgotten about that until he fires them, but Art saves her life.  Omar decides right then and there to become a constitutional monarch, “with no real power” and issues a declaration to have a parliament elected.  That’s convenient!  Now everyone is a hero.  How come this never occurred to Charles I of England or Louis XVI of France, yet Omar Sharif figures it out in 15 seconds. 

Art takes Nancy back to Julian, who snaps at her, rather unfairly, that he thought anything requiring forgiveness was for whatever happened in the harem, not falling in love with Art, which he can see very clearly.  Nancy has to catch the train to England, getting a few more pearls of hokey wisdom from Sarah.    And then, shots ring out from across the sand dunes.  Art has come to claim his woman, though Julian thinks her foolish.  “I won’t wait for you again,” he sneers.  Oh, like she cares?  Not when dashing Art comes galloping over to claim her, disproving the theory that everyone has had, that he can’t run a rebellion and be in love at the same time. 

In the sub-genre of romance miniseries, there are some very passionate and real entries.  There is also a whole bunch of trash, and even the trash is varied.  There is delicious trash like “Lace” or “Evergreen” and there is out-and-out trash like “Harem.”  Lacking any sense of sensuality, completely miscast and so predictable a child could figure out every ensuing scene, “Harem” is a piece that simply took advantage of the genre, assuming that something big and foreign would triumph over its tedious unwrapping. 

We should feel most sorry for poor Ava Gardner, capping off her career here.  Yes, she had an erratic career, mostly because of her own misbehavior, but she certainly didn’t do anything bad enough to earn her role here! 

Categories: Romance Miniseries

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