Secret Ceremony was based on a prize-winning short story by Argentine civil servant Marco Denevi. Elizabeth Taylor plays Leonora, an aging prostitute who becomes convinced that Cenci (Mia Farrow) is her daughter -- who supposedly died in infancy. Cenci knows that she is in fact Leonora's niece, but Leonora will not be dissuaded in her illusion that their blood ties are stronger. Albert (Robert Mitchum), Cenci's incestuous stepfather, enters the scene, laying the groundwork for a near-orgy of insanity. The full effect of Secret Ceremony was idiotically watered down when additional scenes were shot for the TV version in an attempt to make the sordid goings-on acceptable for a mass audience (for example, Elizabeth Taylor's profession was altered from hooker to seamstress!) ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide
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