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Royal Flash is a 1975 film based on George MacDonald Fraser's second Flashman novel, Royal Flash. It starred Malcolm McDowell as Flashman. Oliver Reed appeared in the role of Otto von Bismarck, Alan Bates as Rudi von Sternberg, and Florinda Bolkan played Lola Montez. Fraser wrote the screenplay and the film was directed by Richard Lester.

Plot summary

The film begins with Flashman making a patriotic speech to the boys of Rugby Schoolmarker framed by a giant Union Flag, in a scene which appears to be a parody of the opening sequence in the 1970 film Patton.

The film then follows the plot of the book, which itself largely derives from The Prisoner of Zenda. Flashman is forced by Otto von Bismarck to impersonate a Danishmarker prince, who is about to marry a Germanmarker princess. Bismarck exacts this retribution partly in revenge for Bismarck's humiliation at the hands of Flashman in London; Flashman stole Bismarck's mistress Lola Montez, then manoeuvred him into boxing against a professional boxer, John Gully (played by Henry Cooper), at a house party. Bismarck does not wish the Princess to marry a Dane, since this may tilt the balance on the Schleswig-Holstein Question and interfere with his plans for a united Germany.

Release

The film has not yet been released on DVD in the United Kingdommarker, although a North American (Region 1) version is available.

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