6.6/10
7,765
72 user 28 critic

Pretty Baby (1978)

R | | Drama | 5 April 1978 (USA)
A teenage girl lives as a prostitute in New Orleans in 1917.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
2,965 ( 194)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Beau Pere (1981)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After her mother dies, fourteen-year-old Marion falls in love with her stepfather, Remy.

Director: Bertrand Blier
Stars: Patrick Dewaere, Ariel Besse, Maurice Ronet
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

A writer returns home from World War I. He has developed a very bad case of post traumatic stress disorder. He contemplates suicide, but becomes interested in the 12 year old niece of the ... See full summary »

Director: Mimmo Cattarinich
Stars: Pierre Clémenti, Katya Berger, Ugo Bologna
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Come see the world of American gypsies livening in New York City come see the gypsy court system come see how they pick a king

Director: Frank Pierson
Stars: Eric Roberts, Judd Hirsch, Susan Sarandon
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

In the Victorian period, two children are shipwrecked on a tropical island in the South Pacific. With no adults to guide them, the two make a simple life together, unaware that sexual maturity will eventually intervene.

Director: Randal Kleiser
Stars: Brooke Shields, Christopher Atkins, Leo McKern
Atlantic City (1980)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In a corrupt city, a small-time gangster and the estranged wife of a pot dealer find themselves thrown together in an escapade of love, money, drugs, and danger.

Director: Louis Malle
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Susan Sarandon, Kate Reid
Endless Love (1981)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

A high school student's love for a 15-year-old girl is thwarted by parental disapproval, circumstance and accident.

Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Stars: Brooke Shields, Martin Hewitt, Shirley Knight
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A teen boy grows from playing and fighting with his German-shepherd dog, to playing kids and adult games with two equally young girls, in a dream-like forest which eventually turns eerie, and somber.

Director: Pier Giuseppe Murgia
Stars: Lara Wendel, Eva Ionesco, Martin Loeb
May Fools (1990)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Like Vanya, in Malle's last film, Milou never left the family estate. His mother dies during the May 1968 student uprising in Paris. The brother who is the London correspondent for Le Monde... See full summary »

Director: Louis Malle
Stars: Miou-Miou, Michel Piccoli, Michel Duchaussoy
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Matthew Anton ...
...
...
Seret Scott ...
Cheryl Markowitz ...
Susan Manskey ...
Fanny
Laura Zimmerman ...
Agnes
Miz Mary ...
Odette
...
Highpockets
Mae Mercer ...
Mama Mosebery
Edit

Storyline

In 1917, in the red light district Storyville, New Orleans, the prostitute Hattie lives with her twelve year-old daughter Violet in the fancy brothel of Madame Nell, where she works. Photographer Ernest J. Bellocq has an attraction to Hallie and Violet and he is an habitué of the whorehouse. One day, Madame Nell auctions Violet's virginity and the winner pays the fortune of US$ 400 to spend the night with the girl. Then Hattie marries a wealthy client and moves to Saint Louis, leaving Violet in the brothel alone. Violet decides to marry Bellocq and she moves to his house. Until the day that Hattie, who has overcome her past, comes to Bellocq's house with the intention to take Violet with her. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In 1917, in the red-light district of New Orleans, they called her "Pretty Baby" See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

5 April 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Niña bonita  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?


Goofs

In the final scene, E.J. Bellocq pictures Violet with a Kodak No. 2 Portrait Brownie, which wasn't available until 1929. See more »

Quotes

Bellocq: [about Violet] What will become of her now?
Nell: What's going on with you? You don't have to worry about her. She's made a lot of money. She can do as she likes.
Bellocq: She's only twelve. She's completely alone.
Nell: Bellocq, you're in love with her.
Bellocq: Don't be absurd.
Nell: I've seen it a thousand times. I am old, and I know one thing - life is very long.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits include a card that states, "With our gratitude for the priceless music of FERDINAND "JELLY ROLL" MORTON." See more »

Connections

Featured in 20 to 1: Child Stars: Where Are They Now? (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Careless Love
(uncredited)
Traditional
Played on guitar at dinner
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
This Movie Is Based On Truth!
25 December 2004 | by (Long Beach, CA) – See all my reviews

I'd like to point out that this movie is literally based on first hand recollections of a prostitute interviewed in Al Rose's definitive book on the subject: "Storyville", published many years ago. Anyone familiar with with the era knows that the photographer, E.J. Bellocq, was a real person who captured on glass plates forever the images of the young prostitutes of Storyville. These photographs are hauntingly beautiful in their own right, and the young Brooke Shields--as well as the beautiful Susan Sarandon--were a masterstroke of Malle to play the parts of mother and daughter prostitutes. The recollections in the book draw upon the actual fact that the mother who related the story actually took part in the deflowering of her daughter in the "House" as described, and that they went on to be a "team", a very common and desirable commodity in that day. Not mentioned-- but inferred to those who "read between the lines"-- was that the pony that young Violet casually rides in the backyard of the mansion in the beginning of the movie was actually an animal used to entertain the paying customers in "the circus" that certain women performed in ...for the"right price." Many of the photo sessions depicted in the film are loving recreations of surviving Bellocq prints. The women portraying the "girls" in the movie could have been working girls in "The District" had they lived back then. Some IMDb readers profess to be shocked by conditions in Storyville back then, but as the book recounts, it was all true, and many of the women actually did enjoy their livelyhood. It was the "bluenoses" to the rescue who saved them and the U.S. Navy from themselves, just as they would save the nation from "drink" a few years later. Although ragtime and jazz are touched on in the movie, Storyville was directly responsible for the likes of young Louis Armstrong--who ran coal from House to House--picking up the street melodies he heard and playing them on a cornet furnished to him--providentially--by the local orphanage, and for Ferdinand "Jelly Roll" Morton, pianist...and pimp...who played in only the best houses and claimed he invented the term "jazz" as applied to music after witnessing first hand all that "jassing-around" he saw in the bordellos of Storyville! Remarkeably, overlooked altogether is any mention of the composer of the tune "Pretty Baby," Professor Tony Jackson, a key figure of the Storyville saga, who should have been the character portrayed in the film but wasn't, and who was not even mentioned in the credits.

As for Bellocq himself not much is known except that he was slightly deformed and not interested in the ladies at all sexually-- the marriage to Violet merely a modern plot device--but he professed his deep fascination and reverence for them, thankfully, in other ways: his portraits. Without them, a poignant record of their lives,and that of The District, would be lost forever. All in all, the film is a wonderful paean to Bellocq, and the women he loved in his own way. I would urge all critics of this movie to seek out a copy of "Storyville, New Orleans" by Al Rose, or MOMA's "E.J. Bellocq: Storyville Portraits." They will really open yours eyes to what Louis Malle has recreated.


106 of 116 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?