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Feast of July

Feast of July

Feast of July is a 1995 United Kingdom film directed by Christopher Menaul and produced by Merchant Ivory Productions, based on the 1954 novel by H. E. Bates, starring Embeth Davidtz and Ben Chaplin.

Plot

The movie opens with Isabella Ford (Embeth Davidtz) in a pathetic state, traveling alone from Selmouth to Addisford on foot although she will be having a baby in a short while. In a deserted cabin on the way, she gives birth to a stillborn baby. She buries it and continues her journey to Addisford. She arrives there late in the evening and meets Ben Wainwright (Tom Bell), the lamplighter at Addisford. He asks her about herself and if she has any relatives in Addisford. Bella replies that she does not have any and she came looking for a man by the name of Arch Wilson (Greg Wise). Ben does not know him and seeing her plight, takes her to his house. He tells his wife (Gemma Jones) to get Bella washed up. Bella, now clean and dry, sits at the dinner table while Ben introduces his family. Ben has three children. Matty (Kenneth Anderson), Con (Ben Chaplin) and Jedd (James Purefoy). Matty, the youngest, is a shoemaker, Jedd is a soldier, and Con does not have a specific profession. He does the household chores and helps his parents around. Bella is unable to eat anything during the dinner, starts crying, and faints when she stands up to go to bed.