In Praise of Older Women 1978 ***


Billed as ‘a tale of sensual awakening’, George Kaczender’s adaptation of Stephen Vizinczey’s novel is a little known period drama. Tom Berenger plays Andras Varda, a free-thinking young man who grown up in Hungary during WWII. Pimping out local girls for soldiers, Varda gets a taste for older women, and his sexual encounters make up the bulk of Kaczender’s film. Played by Karen Black, Helen Shaver, Susan Strasberg and Alexander Stewart, the many and varied women are the subject of a bitter-sweet love-letter, celebrating them and yet finding them disposable. Berenger gives a promising performance, and this is one of the few erotic dramas that offer something more than just nudity, a debauched yet sentimental film about a man coming of age.



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