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Candy (1968 film)

Candy (1968 film)

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Candy is a 1968 sex farce film directed by Christian Marquand
Christian Marquand
Christian Marquand was a French director, actor and screenwriter working in French cinema. A native of Marseille, he was born to a Spanish father and an Arabic mother his sister was film director Nadine Trintignant, and he can be seen as a heartthrob in French movies of the 1950s.His first film...

 based on the 1958 novel
Candy (novel)
Candy is a 1958 novel written by Maxwell Kenton in collaboration with Mason Hoffenberg published by Olympia Press. It was later published in North America by Putnam under the authors' own names...

 by Terry Southern
Terry Southern
Terry Southern was an American author, essayist, screenwriter and university lecturer, noted for his distinctive satirical style...

 and Mason Hoffenberg, from a screenplay by Buck Henry
Buck Henry
Henry Zuckerman, better known as Buck Henry , is an American actor, writer, film director, and television director.-Early life:...

. The film satirizes pornographic stories through the adventures of its naive heroine, Candy, played by Ewa Aulin
Ewa Aulin
Ewa Brigitta Aulin is a Swedish actress who appeared in a number of Italian and some American films in the 1960s and 1970s...

. Many established actors are featured in the film, and popular figures such as Sugar Ray Robinson
Sugar Ray Robinson
Sugar Ray Robinson was an African-American professional boxer. Frequently cited as the greatest boxer of all time, Robinson's performances in the welterweight and middleweight divisions prompted sportswriters to create "pound for pound" rankings, where they compared fighters regardless of weight...

, Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg
Anita Pallenberg is an Italian-born actress, model, and fashion designer. She was the romantic partner of Rolling Stones multi-instrumentalist and guitarist Brian Jones and later the partner of the guitarist of the same band Keith Richards, from 1967 to 1979, by whom she has two surviving...

, and Florinda Bolkan
Florinda Bolkan
Florinda Bolkan is a Brazilian actress, born Florinda Bulcão.-Biography:Daughter of a congressman and a granddaughter of a priest on her mother's side, Florinda lived in Fortaleza, the capital of Ceará state, and in Rio de Janeiro until she became a world citizen...

 appear in cameo roles.

Plot


High school student Candy (former Miss Teen Sweden Ewa Aulin
Ewa Aulin
Ewa Brigitta Aulin is a Swedish actress who appeared in a number of Italian and some American films in the 1960s and 1970s...

) seemingly descends to Earth from space. In the relatively simple plot, she naively endures an escalating series of situations in which her oblivious allure triggers satirical porn-film-like encounters. Roger Ebert wrote, "Candy caroms from one man to another like a nympho in a pinball machine, and the characters she encounters are improbable enough to establish Terry Southern's boredom with the conventions of pornography."

In school, her father (John Astin
John Astin
John Allen Astin is an American actor who has appeared in numerous films and television shows, and is best known for the role of Gomez Addams on The Addams Family, and other similarly eccentric comedic characters.-Early years:...

) is also her teacher. At a poetry recital, eccentric poet MacPhisto (Richard Burton
Richard Burton
Richard Burton, CBE was a Welsh actor. He was nominated seven times for an Academy Award, six of which were for Best Actor in a Leading Role , and was a recipient of BAFTA, Golden Globe and Tony Awards for Best Actor. Although never trained as an actor, Burton was, at one time, the highest-paid...

) offers Candy a ride home in his limousine. At her home, MacPhisto drunkenly waxes boisterously poetic, arousing Candy and her gardener Emanuel (Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr
Richard Starkey, MBE better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for The Beatles. When the band formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool band, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. He became The Beatles' drummer in...

) into sex. Scandalized, her family sends her to private school, where she embarks on a psychedelic
Psychedelic
The term psychedelic is derived from the Greek words ψυχή and δηλοῦν , translating to "soul-manifesting". A psychedelic experience is characterized by the striking perception of aspects of one's mind previously unknown, or by the creative exuberance of the mind liberated from its ostensibly...

 journey during which she meets a number of strange people, including a sex starved military general
General
A general officer is an officer of high military rank, usually in the army, and in some nations, the air force. The term is widely used by many nations of the world, and when a country uses a different term, there is an equivalent title given....

 (Walter Matthau
Walter Matthau
Walter Matthau was an American actor best known for his role as Oscar Madison in The Odd Couple and his frequent collaborations with Odd Couple star Jack Lemmon, as well as his role as Coach Buttermaker in the 1976 comedy The Bad News Bears...

), a doctor who performs public operations (James Coburn
James Coburn
James Harrison Coburn III was an American film and television actor. Coburn appeared in nearly 70 films and made over 100 television appearances during his 45-year career, and played a wide range of roles and won an Academy Award for his supporting role as Glen Whitehouse in Affliction.A capable,...

), a hunchback
Kyphosis
Kyphosis , also called roundback or Kelso's hunchback, is a condition of over-curvature of the thoracic vertebrae...

 (Charles Aznavour
Charles Aznavour
Charles Aznavour, OC is an Armenian-French singer, songwriter, actor, public activist and diplomat. Besides being one of France's most popular and enduring singers, he is also one of the best-known singers in the world...

) and a fake Indian guru
Guru
A guru is one who is regarded as having great knowledge, wisdom, and authority in a certain area, and who uses it to guide others . Other forms of manifestation of this principle can include parents, school teachers, non-human objects and even one's own intellectual discipline, if the...

 (Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando
Marlon Brando, Jr. was an American movie star and political activist. "Unchallenged as the most important actor in modern American Cinema" according to the St...

). As the film ends, she continues to cavort with other people plus some of the characters she met in the film, followed by her return to outer space.

Screen debut


This was the solo film acting debut of then Beatle
The Beatles
The Beatles were an English rock band, active throughout the 1960s and one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music. Formed in Liverpool, by 1962 the group consisted of John Lennon , Paul McCartney , George Harrison and Ringo Starr...

 Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr
Richard Starkey, MBE better known by his stage name Ringo Starr, is an English musician and actor who gained worldwide fame as the drummer for The Beatles. When the band formed in 1960, Starr was a member of another Liverpool band, Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. He became The Beatles' drummer in...

; Starr had previously appeared alongside his bandmates John Lennon
John Lennon
John Winston Lennon, MBE was an English musician and singer-songwriter who rose to worldwide fame as one of the founding members of The Beatles, one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed acts in the history of popular music...

, Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney
Sir James Paul McCartney, MBE, Hon RAM, FRCM is an English musician, singer-songwriter and composer. Formerly of The Beatles and Wings , McCartney is listed in Guinness World Records as the "most successful musician and composer in popular music history", with 60 gold discs and sales of 100...

, and George Harrison
George Harrison
George Harrison, MBE was an English musician, guitarist, singer-songwriter, actor and film producer who achieved international fame as lead guitarist of The Beatles. Often referred to as "the quiet Beatle", Harrison became over time an admirer of Indian mysticism, and introduced it to the other...

 in A Hard Day's Night
A Hard Day's Night (film)
A Hard Day's Night is a 1964 British black-and-white comedy film directed by Richard Lester and starring The Beatles—John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr—during the height of Beatlemania. It was written by Alun Owen and originally released by United Artists...

(1964), Help!
Help! (film)
Help! is a 1965 film directed by Richard Lester, starring The Beatles—John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr—and featuring Leo McKern, Eleanor Bron, Victor Spinetti, John Bluthal, Roy Kinnear and Patrick Cargill. Help! was the second feature film made by the Beatles and is a...

(1965) and Magical Mystery Tour
Magical Mystery Tour (film)
Magical Mystery Tour is an hour-long British television film starring The Beatles that originally aired on BBC1 on 26 December 1967...

(1967). Ringo continued appearing in movie roles through the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s — including another film based on a Southern novel, The Magic Christian
The Magic Christian (film)
The Magic Christian is a 1969 British comedy film directed by Joseph McGrath and starring Peter Sellers and Ringo Starr, with noteworthy appearances by John Cleese, Raquel Welch, Christopher Lee, Richard Attenborough and Roman Polanski. It was loosely adapted from the 1959 comic novel of the same...

— while he continued his music career.

Reception


Candy was one of many psychedelic
Psychedelic
The term psychedelic is derived from the Greek words ψυχή and δηλοῦν , translating to "soul-manifesting". A psychedelic experience is characterized by the striking perception of aspects of one's mind previously unknown, or by the creative exuberance of the mind liberated from its ostensibly...

 movies that appeared as the '60s ended, along with Yellow Submarine, The Trip
The Trip (1967 film)
The Trip is a cult film released by American International Pictures, directed by Roger Corman, written by Jack Nicholson, and shot on location in and around Los Angeles, including on top of Kirkwood in Laurel Canyon, Hollywood Hills, and near Big Sur, California in 1966...

, and Head
Head (film)
Head is a 1968 psychedelic comedy-adventure major motion picture, starring TV group The Monkees , and distributed by Columbia Pictures...

. The film opened to mixed box office, but later became a cult classic from the psychedelic years of film. Reviews were generally positive with a few misgivings: the film rates 80% at the Rotten Tomatoes
Rotten Tomatoes
Rotten Tomatoes is a website devoted to reviews, information, and news of films—widely known as a film review aggregator. Its name derives from the cliché of audiences throwing tomatoes and other vegetables at a poor stage performance...

review aggregator. In a review representative of most professional reviewers at the time, Roger Ebert found it "a lot better than you might expect" but missed the "anarchy, the abandon, of Terry Southern's novel." Renata Adler decried "its relentless, crawling, bloody lack of talent".

External links