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Last Tango in Paris (1972)
"Ultimo tango a Parigi" (original title)

 -  Drama | Romance  -  7 February 1973 (USA)
7.2
Your rating:
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 29,577 users   Metascore: 77/100
Reviews: 173 user | 92 critic | 6 from Metacritic.com

A young Parisian woman begins a sordid affair with a middle-aged American businessman who lays out ground rules that their clandestine relationship will be based only on sex.

Writers:

(story), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Title: Last Tango in Paris (1972)

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Maria Michi ...
Rosa's Mother / La mère de Rosa
Giovanna Galletti ...
Prostitute / La prostituée
Gitt Magrini ...
Jeanne's Mother / La mère de Jeanne
Catherine Allégret ...
Catherine (as Catherine Allegret)
Luce Marquand ...
Marie-Hélène Breillat ...
Monique (as Marie-Helene Breillat)
...
Mouchette
Dan Diament ...
TV Sound Engineer / L'ingénieur du son
Catherine Sola ...
TV Script Girl / La script-girl
Mauro Marchetti ...
TV Cameraman / Le cameraman
...
Tom - un cinéaste, le fiancé de Jeanne (as Jean-Pierre Leaud)
...
Marcel
Peter Schommer ...
TV Assistant Cameraman / L'assistant-opérateur
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Storyline

While looking for an apartment, Jeanne, a beautiful young Parisienne, encounters Paul, a mysterious American expatriate mourning his wife's recent suicide. Instantly drawn to each other, they have a stormy, passionate affair, in which they do not reveal their names to each other. Their relationship deeply affects their lives, as Paul struggles with his wife's death and Jeanne prepares to marry her fiance, Tom, a film director making a cinema-verite documentary about her. Written by Erich Schneider <erich@bush.cs.tamu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for some explicit sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

7 February 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Last Tango in Paris  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,250,000 (estimated)

Gross:

SEK 2,704,423 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (R-rated) | (NC-17) | (original cut) | (DVD edition) |

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

While filming, Bernardo Bertolucci tried to explain the point of the film to Marlon Brando, suggesting that his character was Bertolucci's "manhood" and that Maria Schneider's character was his "dream girl". Brando later maintained that he had absolutely no idea of what Bertolucci was suggesting or even talking about. See more »

Goofs

When Paul and Jeanne are at the sinks together, she says, "I prefer to be a whore." Her lips do not move during that line. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Paul: [with his hands over his ears at the overwhelming sound of a passing train] Fucking GOD!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Memphis Beat: The Things We Carry (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Return
(or "La vuelta")
Composed by Gato Barbieri
See more »

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User Reviews

There are those who see ...
24 June 2003 | by (Saint Louis, MO) – See all my reviews

Okay, so I am not supposed to say anything about other user's comments, but I should mention that reading those comments is what lead me to write this...I don't know if this is an enjoyable movie experience, but it is nonetheless a triumph of cinema.

This film has very little to do with sex. It also has very little to do with the tango, and we might want to add it has little to do with Paris. Someone once told me this movie is about an American businessman. Out of curiosity, are all American's traveling in Europe businessmen? I think not. First of all, he was a boxer, a bongo player, he married a wealthy woman, but nowhere did I see this man as working for some corporation. This man had little money, and he didn't need a 'serious' career.

This film is about abuse; a parable about the overly masculine father who sexually abuses his own son; a child abused by his alcoholic parents; a widower who is abused by his animalistic but deadly honest wife. This movie is about a religious zealot for a mother-in-law in constant denial who shows more interest in her daughter's corpse than in her life. This movie is about an idealistic no-longer teenager who perhaps finds true love the only time in her life, but pays a terrible price. It is as though she has bitten from the forbidden fruit and found that love is an illusion.

To say Brando is superb misses the point. I simply know no other actor that could have pulled this off. His facial expressions are uncanny. It is a most fitting bookend to Street Car Named Desire. One simply cannot deny the final elevator scene. But unlike Streetcar, Brando portrays a vivid understanding of the sensitivity towards women and towards human existence that few men are capable of grasping, and few women could probably appreciate. Brando is himself. But Brando is himself because he understands his character, not because he plays himself.

This movie is an existential parody of the nature of society. It is a bitter reflection of human frailty and vanity. It is a tragedy of a man who has actually found a way to transcend his own suffering, who has somehow managed to cut through the illusions that all of us carry day-to-day. But with that knowledge, he finds himself utterly alone (as so many users here seem testament.)


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