The Scarlet Tunic is a 1998 British drama adapting Thomas Hardy's short story of forbidden love, "The Melancholy Hussar of the German Legion." Matthaus Singer (Jean-Marc Barr) is a German hussar, or light calvaryman, stationed in rural England under King George III during the prelude to the Napoleonic Wars. Longing for Germany and tired of waiting for the war to begin, he and his friends are ready to either fight or go home. That is, until he meets Frances Groves (Emma Fielding), a young local woman unhappily engaged to one of her father's friends, Humphrey Gould (John Session). While Gould is away on business, Matthaus and Frances begin a passionate affair and fall deeply in love. When Frances learns that Matthaus, along with other soldiers in his regiment, are planning to defect, she knows that her only chance for happiness is to go with him. Little do they realize that Gould is already on his way home.