Beaumarchais the Scoundrel (Beaumarchais l'insolent)
Description: This sumptuous French drama offers episodes from the notorious life of 18th century socialite and playwright Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais. The story begins in the 1770s with a rehearsal of his The Barber of Seville. Young friend of Voltaire, Philipp Gudin introduces himself to the great playwright and offers to become his personal secretary. He then becomes the adventurous Beaumarchais' keeper as the author gets involved in a variety of situations including a duel with an angry husband, his battle with the corrupt French government and a serious long-term affair with Marie-Theres de Willer. It all comes to a climax when King Louis XV assigns the playwright a secret mission to London. There he must find and retrieve a damning document from transvestite aristocrat Chevalier D'Eon. Unfortunately, Beaumarchais gets tangled up with supporting American rebels and ends up tossed in jail. Louis XVI sees that he is finally released and then the writer becomes an arms smuggler for American revolutionaries. All of his activities bankrupt him and so Beaumarchais must return to writing plays.~ Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide
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