La Ceremonie (1995)

CLAUDE CHABROL

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.5

Alternate title:  A Judgment In Stone

France/Germany, 1995.  France 3 Cinéma, MK2 Productions, Olga Film, Prokino Filmproduktion, Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen.  Screenplay by Claude Chabrol, , based on the novel A Judgment In Stone by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Sophie () is a working-class woman who goes to work as a housekeeper for a wealthy family in their plush country estate. Befriending the local post-mistress (Isabelle Huppert, bewitching as ever), the two women find themselves tired of occupying the bottom rung of society and take out their frustration on Sophie’s employers in the most shocking fashion. Unlike other films on the subject, Claude Chabrol’s thriller is never gruesome or distasteful, but maintains a slick image and forward pace throughout, partly because two exceptional women are playing the leads.

Toronto International Film Festival:  1995

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