Madonna of the Seven Moons

The most extravagant of the “Gainsborough Gothics,” period romances which Gainsborough Pictures supplied the English as a counter to wartime and post-war austerity, Arthur Crabtree's Madonna of the Seven Moons is both spicy and grim, with the best elements of passion, frankness and psychological outrageousness offered by the genre. Phyllis Calvert plays Madalena Labardi, the wife of a wealthy wine merchant, given to philanthropic pursuits and the meditative life in their beautiful Italian villa. A docile paragon of virtue, Madalena does have a problem: every six years, she suffers a complete change of personality, becomes the gypsy, Rosanna, and runs off to her gypsy-bandit lover Nino (Stewart Granger) (who possibly operates on a similar schedule, as he is always waiting for her). At the root of this schizophrenia: a childhood rape at the convent school - while picking flowers. Excellent costume melodrama.

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