Down 1,242 this week

Just Before Nightfall (1971)
"Juste avant la nuit" (original title)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  31 March 1971 (France)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.5/10 from 808 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 11 critic

Charles Masson, an advertising executive, is having an affair with Laura, the wife of his best friend, the architect François Tellier. Charles strangles Laura when one of their S&M games ... See full summary »



0Check in

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 43 titles
created 09 Apr 2011
a list of 49 titles
created 17 Jul 2012
list image
a list of 48 titles
created 03 Mar 2013
a list of 10 titles
created 9 months ago
a list of 101 titles
created 5 months ago

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Just Before Nightfall (1971)

Just Before Nightfall (1971) on IMDb 7.5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Just Before Nightfall.
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »


Cast overview, first billed only:
François Périer ...
Dominique Zardi ...
Henri Attal ...
Paul Temps ...
Daniel Lecourtois ...
Clelia Matania ...
Celia ...
Pascal Gillot ...
Auguste Masson
Brigitte Périn ...
Joséphine Masson
Marcel Gassouk ...
Anna Douking ...
Roger Lumont ...
Commissaire Delfeil


Charles Masson, an advertising executive, is having an affair with Laura, the wife of his best friend, the architect François Tellier. Charles strangles Laura when one of their S&M games goes too far. Dazed, Charles walks out of the borrowed apartment in Paris and soon bumps into François in a nearby bistro. They drive back together to Versailles, where they have beautiful neighboring houses designed by François. The owner of the apartment had seen Laura and Charles together two months earlier, but she does not tell the police on the advice of François. Even though the police do not seem to have any clues to the crime, Charles has a difficult time coping with the situation, and trying to live a normal life with his two children and loving wife Hélène. Written by Will Gilbert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama


See all certifications »





Release Date:

31 March 1971 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Just Before Nightfall  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


See  »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Study in Moral Complexity
13 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is the most morally exquisite of Chabrol's many explorations of the human condition. Guilt, forgiveness, revenge coexist and mutually triumph. Many of us assume these three moral stances are mutually incompatible. Chabrol balances them against each other and then fuses them together. The actors reveal their inner dilemmas with gestures more than words. Deep intentions run across surface motives. And the final gesture of this compelling film casts all that went before into another, deeper level. Of course, no deed is as simple as it seems. But few appreciate as Chabrol does here that our all too common morally mixed motives can continue to coexist to the grave. No evil deed is ever straightforward, but neither are the best ones.

Had Chabrol filmed this in the style of Bergman, this film would be a Criterion Classic. But filmed as a thriller, it has sadly failed to gain the audience and admiration it so richly deserves. It is a philosophical triumph!

12 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
U.S. DVD Release???? neil57
Region 1 DVD is available neil57
Discuss Just Before Nightfall (1971) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: