Another Country is a 1984 British movie written by Julian Mitchell, adapted from his stage play of the same title, and directed by Marek Kanievska. It stars Rupert Everett, Colin Firth, Anna Massey and Rupert Wainwright. It has no connection with the James Baldwin novel of the same title.
The film was nominated for three BAFTA awards and also an award at the Cannes Film Festival.
The film is a romantic drama, loosely based on the life of the spy and double agent Guy Burgess, "Guy Bennett" in the film (Everett). It explores his homosexuality and exposure to Marxism, while dwelling on what the author sees as the hypocrisy and snobbery of the English so-called "public" (i.e. private) school system.
The story is set in the 1930s in a boys' elite boarding school that is clearly supposed to be Eton College, where Everett and Firth play senior schoolboys (although Everett was actually already 24 when the film was made, three years after he first played the role in the stage version).
In a tense, climactic scene, Everett's character is subjected to a caning by prefects. They are students no older than he is, but they have seniority in the school's rigid hierarchy, which is portrayed as a scandal-ridden hotbed of envy and hatred. The scene is closely modelled on an Eton "house beating", a formal ceremony in which the culprit must bend over while holding on to, and with his head under, the edge of a table to receive several vigorous strokes of the cane across the seat of the trousers from the house captain. Afterwards the boy is seen holding his posterior in pain and being unable to sit comfortably.