Madame Rosa

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Badly adapted from a rather good novel by Emile Ajar, this is art cinema at its artless, exploitative worst. An essentially simple tale - of a prostitute's child, Momo, brought up with a bevy of similar kids by professional foster-mother/aged ex-prostitute Madame Rosa - is used to screw the audience for every ounce of its social conscience, with Signoret evidently (and mistakenly) convinced that she's in a 'political' film. Far from reflecting the realities of streetwalking in Pigalle, or of childhood in the ghetto of Belleville, the film trades instead on Rosa's memories of Auschwitz (to which she refers with objectionable facility) and the boy's Algerian background to fabricate a pretentious allegory on Israeli/Arab conflict. Eventually, thank God, Rosa dies and doe-eyed Momo is 'rescued' - in a crowning example of nauseating, complacent sentimentality - by a chic young couple.

By: CA

Release details

Cast and crew

Director: Moshe Mizrahi
Screenwriter: Moshe Mizrahi
Cast: Simone Signoret
Claude Dauphin
Samy Ben Youb
Gabriel Jabbour
Michal Bat Adam