El Rey Pasmado (The Dumbfounded King)

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It is 1620, and the young King of Spain (Gabino Diego) is technically a married man, because the great churchmen have conducted a grand public wedding ceremony joining him with a wife. However, as the real rulers of the state, they have perversely kept him completely innocent in matters of sex, so that his marriage remains unconsummated. One day, one of the king's few friends sees to it that he gets to spend a little time with a high-class prostitute (Laura del Sol). In fact, she's so high class that she's the favorite whore for the Grand Inquisitor himself. After the king's initiation into the joys of the female body, he publicly declares his desire to see his queen naked, which scandalizes his prudish and very hypocritical court. The Inquisitor (Fernando Fernan Gomez), when he learns of the boy's meeting with the prostitute, issues two conflicting instructions to two different aides. He sends one to have her arrested and another to warn her to go into hiding. That kind of convoluted behavior is the norm in this humorous historical drama. One of the controversies the court entertains itself with is whether or not the king committed adultery with the prostitute, since it could be alleged that he wasn't quite completely married at the time, according to the legal and theological conventions of the time. ~ Clarke Fountain, Rovi


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