(Gerry O'Hara, 1978)
Harlequin's first movie, and the exploratory transition from text to visual medium would explain the film's fatal inability to help us understand what exactly is going on in these people's heads. To be specific, why does the recalcitrant Susan Penhaligon suddenly fall in love with Kier Dullea's sour gimp upon being told he's holding her hostage? And why is Dullea demanding her immediate departure five minutes hence? No interminable backstory, Freudian deep reading, or female-friendly pop cultural theory is going to rationalize this level of inchoate nonsense. I suppose some canny hack could have smothered the illogic with images, but as primal metaphors go the leopard in question looks awfully bored. It's all very pretty of course, but inevitably there's not a trace of wit or grit, and the romantic fulfillment fantasy is cruelly yoked to Robin Leach-esque upward gazing and the kind of desperately neurotic clinging that might suggest why bored housewives need this tripe in the first place.