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Les dames du Bois de Boulogne (1945)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 3 April 1964 (USA)
A society lady engineers a marriage between her lover and a cabaret dancer who is essentially a prostitute.



(scenario & adaptation), (novel) | 1 more credit »

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Cast overview:
Paul Bernard ...
Lucienne Bogaert ...
Mme. D
Jean Marchat ...
Yvette Etiévant ...
La bonne
Marcel Rouzé
Bernard La Jarrige
Lucy Lancy
Nicole Regnault
Emma Lyonel
Marguerite de Morlaye


Hélène understands that Jean doesn't love her anymore. She is full of grief and anger, and she starts brooding on revenge. When she meets Jean, she pretends herself to be the one that has ceased to love the other. Jean is relieved, because now he thinks they can part as friends. Hélène goes to a night club, where a young woman, Agnès, is a famous dancer. Agnés has been forced into this life of debauchery and courtesanship because of poverty. She hates it and all the lecherous men. Hélène has met Agnès and her mother several years ago, and after the show she looks them up. She says that she will help them to leave this degrading life. The next day they shall move to an apartment she has rented, and stay there anonymously. Some days later she arranges a seemingly spontaneous meeting between Jean and Agnès in the Bois de Boulogne. Jean immediately falls in love with Agnès, who he thinks is an innocent girl from the countryside. Fueled by Hélène, and by Agnès's resistance, his infatuation... Written by Maths Jesperson {maths.jesperson1@comhem.se}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Starring the magnificent Maria Casares as 'first violin" in a 'string quartet" of 3 women and 1 man - Diderot's classic tale adapted by Jean Cocteau of a jilted woman's devastating revenge that boomeranged!


Drama | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

3 April 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ladies of the Park  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


When Agnes is dancing in the club, her costume changes between when she is dancing and when she goes to her dressing room. The lower edge of the costume on her thighs varies between a straight edge and a ruffled one. See more »


Agnès: [looking aroud her new home] Are you sure all this is necessary? If so, I accept it. But do you realize what we are in for?
Mme. D: I do. Our life was a nightmare.
Agnès: And this is a dream?
See more »


Referenced in The Road to Bresson (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

The Fires of Love
9 April 2007 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

"Le Dames de Bois de Boulogne" is a very beautiful and rich love story. Bresson was a painter before becoming a director and he thought that images could convey feelings more purely than words. Contrary to many other films in which the words are the main tools used to describe feelings and love, the films of Bresson rely on the power of images. That is why "Les Dames de Bois de Boulogne" can have such an emotional impact on the sensitive viewer. In some ways Bresson reminds me of Antonioni (only visually speaking). Bresson is what I would call an idealist and Antonioni, maybe a relativist? (It is difficult to put a label on people or peoples ideas), but anyway both of them are visual masters.

"Le Dames de Bois de Boulogne" describes the many stages of a love relationship very subtly - a never-ending passion (but the fire is slowly going out) and the couple, Jean (Paul Bernard) and Helene (Maria Casares) decides (by suggestion of Helene) that it's time for them to end their love relationship but to remain faithful friends for life. Everything seems to be alright till Jean knows Agnès (a Helene protégée) and falls in love with her. But in Helene the remaining embers of the old passion are enough to rekindle the fire (not of love, but of jealousy) and she plans revenge.........

This is the classic love triangle story, but it is told without fanfares in a minimalistic way, and therefore it has a strong effect. At the end of the film we are esthetically and emotionally moved. We saw beauty.

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