They're packing them in at the tent revival today. The young woman called Jenny Angel is preaching - and performing miracles of healing on the blind and lame.
Angel Baby takes viewers inside the evangelistic tent with its story of godly aspirations and human frailties. Salomé Jens plays Jenny, who becomes a popular preacher on the tent circuit after being cured of muteness at a revival... and becomes an innocent target of a moneyman eager to exploit her following. Shirtless, muscled-up Burt Reynolds makes his feature debut as a good ol' boy Romeo. Others in the starry cast include George Hamilton, Joan Blondell and as a vengeful fire-and-brimstoner, Mercedes McCambridge.
Based on JENNY ANGEL, a novel by Elise Oaks Barber, ANGEL BABY is a gloves-off study of the faith-healing racket. The title character, played by Salome Jens, is a mute whose speech is ostensibly restored by Bible-thumper George Hamilton. Angel Baby is then exploited on the evangelical circuit by crooked promoter Burt Reynolds (in his feature film debut). She becomes disillusioned, but her faith is restored when she apparently heals a crippled child. Any opportunity to see stage actress Salome Jens in one of her rare movie roles is always to be treasured; in this instance, Ms. Jens is backed up by an equally stellar supporting cast, including Mercedes McCambridge, Joan Blondell, and Henry Jones.
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