The Mother and the Whore (1973)
"La maman et la putain" (original title)

 |  Drama, Romance  |  17 May 1973 (France)
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Reviews: 33 user | 34 critic

In Paris, the pedantic Alexandre lives with his mate Marie in her apartment, an open relationship. Alexandre, who is idle and chauvinist, spends his days reading, drinking and shagging ... See full summary »



(scenario and dialogue)
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Françoise Lebrun ...
Isabelle Weingarten ...
Jacques Renard ...
Alexandre's Friend
Jean-Noël Picq ...
Offenbach's Fan


In Paris, the pedantic Alexandre lives with his mate Marie in her apartment, an open relationship. Alexandre, who is idle and chauvinist, spends his days reading, drinking and shagging women. After flirting with his former affair, Gilberte, who tells him that she will marry soon her boyfriend, Alexandre meets the Laenne Hospital nurse Veronika Osterwald and they schedule a date. Alexandre learns that Veronika is a promiscuous woman that loves to shag and introduces her to Marie. They have a threesome and Alexandre has a crush on Veronika. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


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Release Date:

17 May 1973 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Mother and the Whore  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Jean Eustache wrote the role of Alexandre specifically for Jean-Pierre Leaud. See more »


While reading the book of Gestapo at his friend's home, Alexandre is holding a cigarette in his right hand in the close-up. In the next shot he is only holding the book. See more »


Veronika: I followed you because I wanted to be with you. You know what? I'd like to fuck you again. I love you and I want to fuck you again.
See more »


References Four Nights of a Dreamer (1971) See more »


La Belle Hélène
Music by Jacques Offenbach (as Offenbach)
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User Reviews

One of the last classics of the French New Wave
13 December 2000 | by (NYC) – See all my reviews

One of the last classics of the French New Wave. For direction, cineaste Jean Eustache drew from the simplicity of early-century cinema; for story, Eustache drew on the torments of his own complicated love life. So many things can be said of this film - observationally brilliant; self indulgently overlong; occasionally hilarious; emotionally draining...etc. etc. In my mind, whatever complaints that can be leveled against this film are easily overshadowed by its numerous strengths. Every film student, writer, or simply anyone willing to handle a 3 hour film with no abrupt cuts, no music video overstyling, no soap opera-like plot twists, and no banal dialogue should make it a point to see this movie. Everything is to be admired: the writing (concise, clever, surprisingly funny), acting (everyone, quite simply, is perfect in their respective roles), and, simple direction (the viewer feels like a casual observer within the film) make this film unforgettable. This is undoubtedly a film that stays with you.

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