Madame Bovary

Film

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>4</span>/5
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Time Out says

Chabrol's long-delayed adaptation of Flaubert's novel is as suffocating as its heroine's predicament. Emma, the ambitious farmer's daughter taken for a wife by arch-mediocrity Dr Bovary (Jean-François Balmer in a perfectly controlled performance), has been the subject of see-sawing literary interpretations since the 1860s. Chabrol sticking to the letter of the text avoided the temptation to cast her in a modernised feminist role and stressed instead her stifling limitation of choices in provincial 19th century France. Isabelle Huppert, often a blood-drained, internalised actress, outdoes herself here, playing Emma in a distracted, half-comatose state, resuscitated briefly by the odd gowned ball or the lifeline to passion proffered by heart-breaker Rodolphe (Malavoy). The birth of a child fails to bring light into her eyes. A classical art movie saturated with Chabrol's dark romantic pessimism.
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Release details

UK release:

1991

Duration:

129 mins

Cast and crew

Director:

Claude Chabrol

Cast:

Jean Yanne, Christophe Malavoy, Jean-François Balmer, Isabelle Huppert, Lucas Belvaux

Music:

Matthieu Chabrol

Production Designer:

Michèle Abbé

Editor:

Monique Fardoulis

Cinematography:

Jean Rabier

Screenwriter:

Claude Chabrol

Producer:

Marin Karmitz

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<strong>Rating: </strong><span class='lf-avgRating'>0</span>/5

Average User Rating

3.8 / 5

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LiveReviews|2
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E A Dobson

Please bare in mind i know nothing of the original novel or other filmed versions of this story.The dvd came free with a newspaper & after reading 2 poor reviews i very nearly didn`t watch it.In fact the only reason i did is because i`d seen Huppert in The Piano Teacher many years ago.It`s a similarly cold performance(which may/will put some viewers off),not quite as cruel as in that film but i presume Michael Haneke saw her in this before casting.Also mentioned in the TO review above is Balmer who also gives a noteworthy performance.One of the reviews i read on amazon mentioned time & again how boring this film is but i personally wasn`t bored for one minute,Huppert seems to me one of the very best actresses on the planet,Meryl Streep eat your heart out! seriously! and i like Meryl Streep.The only other film by Claude Chabrol i`ve seen is Le Boucher,which i loved,but this is a costume drama and not a very happy one,so if you`ve read this review you know what to expect! The film loses one star for the narrator,who i had a small problem with.

E A Dobson

Please bare in mind i know nothing of the original novel or other filmed versions of this story.The dvd came free with a newspaper & after reading 2 poor reviews i very nearly didn`t watch it.In fact the only reason i did is because i`d seen Huppert in The Piano Teacher many years ago.It`s a similarly cold performance(which may/will put some viewers off),not quite as cruel as in that film but i presume Michael Haneke saw her in this before casting.Also mentioned in the TO review above is Balmer who also gives a noteworthy performance.One of the reviews i read on amazon mentioned time & again how boring this film is but i personally wasn`t bored for one minute,Huppert seems to me one of the very best actresses on the planet,Meryl Streep eat your heart out! seriously! and i like Meryl Streep.The only other film by Claude Chabrol i`ve seen is Le Boucher,which i loved,but this is a costume drama and not a very happy one,so if you`ve read this review you know what to expect! The film loses one star for the narrator,who i had a small problem with.