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The Salamander (1971)
"La salamandre" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  27 October 1971 (France)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 330 users  
Reviews: 3 user | 9 critic

Two men, arty though somewhat staid, are drawn to the spirited and quixotic Rosemonde, a young working-class woman whom they meet because they're writing a teleplay about a minor but ... See full summary »


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Title: The Salamander (1971)

The Salamander (1971) on IMDb 7.2/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Bulle Ogier ...
Jean-Luc Bideau ...
Jacques Denis ...
Véronique Alain ...
Daniel Stuffel ...
Le patron du magasin de chaussures
Marblum Jequier ...
La femme de Paul (as Marblum Jéquier)
Marcel Vidal ...
L'oncle de Rosemonde
Dominique Catton ...
Violette Fleury ...
La mère du patron du magasin de chaussures
Mista Préchac ...
La mère de Rosemonde
Pierre Walker ...
L'inspecteur de la Régie
Janine Christoffe ...
Catherine, une amie de Pierre
Guillaume Chenevière ...
L'inspecteur de police
Claudine Berthet ...
Zoé, la dactylo
Michel Viala ...
Le patron peintre en bâtiment


Two men, arty though somewhat staid, are drawn to the spirited and quixotic Rosemonde, a young working-class woman whom they meet because they're writing a teleplay about a minor but curious event in which either her uncle was wounded while cleaning his rifle or she shot him. Pierre is a free-lance journalist hired to write the script; he's short of time so he asks a Bohemian poet friend, Paul, to help. Pierre wants facts and tracks down Rosemonde for interviews that lead to other explorations; Paul only wants to imagine her and needs little more than her name to do so. But he does meet her, and she entangles him, too. Did she cause the shooting? Is she venomous or innocent? Written by <>

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Release Date:

27 October 1971 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Salamander  »

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Remade as Fourbi (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

Wonderful film
3 July 2002 | by (Ottawa, Canada) – See all my reviews

I have seen only two other films by Tanner, Le Milieu du monde and Jonas..., but I can say that he is one of my favorite directors. This episodic, fascinating work was written by Tanner and John Berger, the left-wing art critic, and it attacks the mania for finding tidy explanations for deviant behavior: if a man cleans his gun and it goes off, wounding him, is it an accident or foul play? If the man's daughter is a strange, half-educated rural girl, should either Pierre or Paul start sleeping with her? What are the employment prospects of a girl who can't fill a plastic casing with sausage out of a machine, and who listens to heavy rock as though there's a message from the cosmos in it?

I fell into the rhythm of this picture very easily. Its critique of life in bourgeois Switzerland is sharp--the visit from the inspector of "civil decency" is very funny. Both Jean-Luc Bideau and Jacques Denis are very good as the two sheepish city guys, and Bulle Ogier always holds your attention as the unsophisticated Rosemonde who just wants to have fun.

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