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The Road to Shame (1959)

Des femmes disparaissent (original title)
Pierre Rossi and Béatrice live in the same block of flats in Marseille and love each other. One night, Béatrice leaves her apartment. Pierre knows that his fiancée goes to a rendezvous, but... See full summary »



(novel) (as G. Morris-Dumoulin), (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Hossein ...
Pierre Rossi
Coraline Merlin
Estella Blain ...
Philippe Clay ...
Jane Marken ...
Mme. Cassini
Robert Lombard ...
François Darbon ...
Pierre Collet ...
Jean Juillard ...
William Sabatier ...
Yvon Sarray
Olivier Mathot
Jean Degrave
Alain Nobis
Anita Treyens ...


Pierre Rossi and Béatrice live in the same block of flats in Marseille and love each other. One night, Béatrice leaves her apartment. Pierre knows that his fiancée goes to a rendezvous, but she would not tell him more than just that. Worried, Pierre follows her but he is attacked and stolen his identity papers by two men, Tom and Nasol, on the payroll of Quaglio, one of the city's bosses. Later on, Quaglio kills Nasol and deposits the body in a garage, leaving Pierre's papers nearby. As for Pierre, he manages to follow Tom to a villa where several young women have been invited. Pierre, horrified, realizes that this place is the headquarters for the white slave trade. Written by Guy Bellinger

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Plot Keywords:

marseille | based on novel | See All (2) »


Behind this door an experience SO RAW you'll never forget!!! See more »




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Release Date:

1 May 1959 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Road to Shame  »

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Did You Know?


The action takes place in a single night's time. See more »


Final Pour Pierre Et Béatrice
Written and Performed by Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers
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User Reviews

Robert Hossein vs. white slavery racket
8 June 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Des femmes disparaissent" (1959) (Women Disappear) is a film noir, no question about it. It's a very good one too, and one that's missed by all the major critics including John Grant.

Robert Hossein is the protagonist, a young man who doesn't say much. He doesn't have to say much in many parts of this film. We see his face and know what he's feeling and thinking. His girl friend and fiancée is Estella Blain. She and some other young ladies are having a girls' night out, but little do they know that they are falling into a very subtle honey trap set up by Jacques Dacqmine. His right-hand strong-arm man is Philippe Clay, who just about steals the movie.

The entire story takes place during one night, affording ample opportunity for noir photography; and it seems to me that director Édouard Molinaro has gone out of his way to make sure that it is noir. The music is by Art Blakey with a top quintet (Lee Morgan, Benny Golson among them); they lead off with "Are You Real?".

The idea of the plot is not complex, but its execution has a good many twists and turns, making it quite suspenseful so that it becomes a crime thriller. The screenplay is sophisticated, making the characters quite real and realistic. The staging is good but not at the head of the class. This is what prevents this movie from scoring higher, in my opinion; but believe me, it's a great pleasure to have seen yet another fine French noir. The year 1959 was a peak year for French noirs. By my count, there were 30 in that year alone.

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