As in Ken Russell's Gothic, it is the summer of 1816. Shelley, his lover Mary Goodwin, and her half-sister Claire Clairmont, gather at the Hôtel d'Angleterre in Secheron, where who should turn up but Lord Byron. We can tell that Shelley (Stoltz) is an untrammelled spirit because he flashes his willy in a waterfall, and that Byron (Anglim) is a free-thinker because he smokes opium provided by his adoring catamite Dr Polidori (Winter). When they have nothing better to do, the queer quintet attempt to scare the hell out of each other in the dungeons of Chillon castle, but all that comes out is yawns. Quivering glances, sensitive silences, pretty photography, and Haydn harmonies do not in themselves make a film serious. Passer, who directed the excellent Cutter's Way, has turned coy here, opting for soft lighting, soft focus, and shots through sheets of gauze for the sedate sex scenes.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Lewis John Carlino|