Sharpe's Regiment (1996)

Film details

Synopsis

Sharpe and Harper return to England from Spain to recruit new soldiers for the depleted ranks of the South Essex regiment. Sharpe is summond to court to meet the Prince of Wales, who is impressed by Sharpe's performance on the battle field. When he goes to pick up his new recruits, Sharpe discovers corruption, and when he reports his suspcicions, he and Harper find themselves the subject of an assassination attempt. In an attempt to find evidence to support their claims, Sharpe and Harper fake their own deaths and re-enlist in the South Essex regiment under false names. They and other recruits are put through their paces at a training camp under the harsh direction of the Irish-hating Colonel Girdwood and the tyrannical Sergeant Lynch. On a working party at the home of Sir Henry Simmerson, Sharpe sees an auction of trained recruits, with officers from different regiments paying 50 guineas per man. Jane Gibbons discovers him and promises to help him escape and expose the illegal sales. She also reveals that her uncle, Simmerson, beats her and proposes to marry her to Girdwood. One of the young recruits is shot for desertion and Sharpe has to come to Harper's rescue when the latter is forced to be the quarry in a man-hunt with Simmerson, Girdwood and other officers giving chase. Sharpe reports his findings to Lawford, whom he trusts, but the latter goes straight to Lord Fenner, who is beind the operation, and offers to hush it all up in return for favours for himself and Sharpe. Lady Caroline warns Sharpe as she wants vengeance on Fenner, and Sharpe takes it upon himself to return to the training camp with Harper and arrest Girdwood. He officially signs up the recruits to the regiment and marches them to the regiment's barracks. Jane promises to try and obtain the written evidence he needs, but the ledgers and books are taken by Girdwood to Simmerson, who orders them burnt. Sharpe saves his regiment by impressing the Prince Regent and manipulating its becoming a Prince of Wales regiment. Fenner tries to ruin Sharpe's career but Lady Caroline blackmails him and Simmerson, having obtained the incriminating ledgers. He rescues Jane and proposes to her, and his orders send him and the new reinforcements back to Spain to fight the French.

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