The Beneficiary (1980)

Run Time - 47 min.  |   Countries - United Kingdom   |  
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This depressing drama is taken from a short story by Anton Chekhov. The McCarthy family of County Galway in Ireland are poor until the father's favorite son comes home with a small fortune. They become members of the landed gentry until it is discovered the money has been forged. A second son's ruthless wife seeks vengeance, an act that leads to the family's downfall. As poor laborers, they are reduced to working on the land they once owned, building a stone wall. Ireland is portrayed as colorless and oppressive, with the characters weighed down by their burdens to the point that no merriment is evident in their miserable lives.