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La désenchantée (1990)

Seventeen-year-old Beth is just finishing school, and lives in Paris with her bedridden mother and younger brother. She is annoyed because her boyfriend suggested she try sleeping with ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
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Marcel Bozonnet ...
Ivan Desny ...
Malcolm Conrath ...
Thérèse Liotard ...
Thomas Salsmann ...
Hai Truhong Tu ...
Francis Mage ...
Stéphane Auberghen ...
Marion Ferry ...
Caroline Bonmarchand ...
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Storyline

Seventeen-year-old Beth is just finishing school, and lives in Paris with her bedridden mother and younger brother. She is annoyed because her boyfriend suggested she try sleeping with other men - the uglier the better. Sugardad, a doctor who visits her mother, and supports them with occasional cheques, now has his eyes on Beth. Alphonse, an older man, intervenes when Beth's boyfriend is fighting with her on the banks of the Seine. When she visits Alphonse later, they end up discussing poetry. Written by Will Gilbert

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Drama | Romance

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27 May 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Disenchanted  »

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User Reviews

is escape possible?

Judith Godreche plays Beth, a seventeen year old girl coming of age in Paris. Beth's life is a bleak one. Her mother, a prostitute, is ill and cannot support Beth or her younger brother. Beth's boyfriend, identified only as "whats-his-name" is cold and abusive.

After a fight, whats-his-name challenges Beth to prove her love by seducing the ugliest man she can find. Beth takes up the challenge to spite him, and begins the sexual odyssey that lies at the center of the film.

This is a decidedly feminist film. The men surrounding Beth all treat her as a particular object. None knows, nor cares to know, who Beth really is. To the doctor she is a young woman to be made into a prostitute. To whats-his-name she is a possession. To Alphonse, she is a mirror for his own self-absorbed nihilism. Even her bedridden mother sees her as merely a potential source of money, if only she will surrender to the doctor.

Even the viewer is culpable. We see only sertain facets of Beth, and we can only imagine who she is in her entirety. Because the distance between Beth and the viewer never closes, we are forced into supposition. It is an uneasy position, a position that makes suspect any conclusions or judgements we make about Beth or her actions. The film does not provide us with an answer.


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