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

NC-17  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  7 February 1973 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 33,595 users   Metascore: 77/100
Reviews: 174 user | 93 critic | 6 from

A young Parisian woman meets a middle-aged American businessman who demands their clandestine relationship be based only on sex.


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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »



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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)
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)
Peter Schommer ...
TV Assistant Cameraman / L'assistant-opérateur


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 <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

7 February 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Last Tango in Paris  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,250,000 (estimated)


SEK 2,704,423 (Sweden)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (R-rated) | (rough cut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film was originally to revolve around a passionate, homosexual relationship, but this idea was scrapped when the French actor for whom the idea was conceived, backed out of the film. See more »


When Jennie disappears during her bridal gown fitting, Tom goes running down the street to find her in the pouring rain. As he gets about fifty feet from the camera he sudden runs into a section of the street that is dry and there is no rain coming down. He apparently ran past the maximum range of the rain making equipment they were using for the shot. See more »


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


Referenced in Queen Kong (1976) See more »


Last Tango in Paris
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.)

187 of 237 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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