A coproduction that utilizes several talents from many countries to no avail as it tells a muddled story, with the varied acting styles clashing. Van Fleet is a widow operating a large rice plantation in Indochina (Vietnam, presumably) that is in danger of being swallowed by the angry sea.
She has two children, Perkins and Mangano. They are struggling to make this farm profitable when Conte, a government agent, arrives and attempts to get them off their land. That idea is soon tossed aside when he meets and falls for Mangano. At the same time, Perkins leaves the farm and goes to
Bangkok because he can't handle all the pressure put on him by his forceful mother. While there, he meets Valli at a movie house and spends the evening drinking with her. Persoff is another landowner who would like to buy out Van Fleet's interest and take over the rice paddies and Mangano at the
same time. The wall that keeps the sea out is damaged and Van Fleet and Mangano have to go to Bangkok to raise money. Then Mangano and brother Perkins do a sensuous dance, and Perkins sings, "One Kiss Away from Heaven" by Sam Coslow and A. Romeo. Other songs include, for no good reason, "Uh Huh"
(by Billy Dawn and Leroy Kirkland), "Only You," (by Ram and Rand), and "Ya Ya Ya," (by Alvy West). In the end, Van Fleet dies, Mangano winds up with Conte, and Perkins goes back to the plantation to rebuild the sea wall after a flood (the only truly exciting scene) damages the area. There is far
more atmosphere than plot and virtually no cinematic activity other than the lovingly photographed vistas of Thailand. Made with actors from the US, France, Italy, and Thailand, directed by a Frenchman from a script by himself and an American, and produced by an Italian in Thailand and at studios
in Italy, this is a true coproduction, a broth that suffers from too many cooks.
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- Rating: NR
- Review: A coproduction that utilizes several talents from many countries to no avail as it tells a muddled story, with the varied acting styles clashing. Van Fleet is a widow operating a large rice plantation in Indochina (Vietnam, presumably) that is in danger of… (more)