IMDb > Queen to Play (2009)
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Queen to Play (2009) More at IMDbPro »Joueuse (original title)

Queen to Play -- Middle-aged chambermaid Hélène's newfound obsession with the game of chess leads her to seek the tutelage of a reclusive American expat, transforming both of their ho-hum lives in the process.


User Rating:
6.9/10   2,195 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
Popularity: ?
Down 12% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
View company contact information for Queen to Play on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
1 April 2011 (USA) See more »
Middle-aged chambermaid Hélène's newfound obsession with the game of chess leads her to seek the tutelage of a reclusive American expat... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins & 2 nominations See more »
(18 articles)
Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Color of Lies
 (From Disc Dish. 1 May 2014, 3:46 PM, PDT)

Blu-ray, DVD Release: The Big Chill
 (From Disc Dish. 16 April 2014, 4:04 PM, PDT)

The Best Films of 2011
 (From Roger Ebert's Blog. 25 December 2011, 11:56 AM, PST)

User Reviews:
Small, Sweet, Powerful: Cleaning Lady Discovers Dignity and Passion Through Chess See more (22 total) »


  (in credits order)

Directed by
Caroline Bottaro 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Caroline Bottaro  writer
Bertina Henrichs  novel

Produced by
Dominique Besnehard .... producer
Michel Feller .... producer
Jean-Philippe Laroche .... executive producer
Amelie Latscha .... co-producer
Cinematography by
Jean-Claude Larrieu 
Film Editing by
Tina Baz 
Casting by
Tatiana Vialle 
Production Design by
Emmanuel de Chauvigny 
Set Decoration by
Frédéric Jacq 
Costume Design by
Dorothée Guiraud 
Makeup Department
Cédric Kerguillec .... makeup artist
Fabienne Robineau .... hair stylist
Production Management
Rémi Bergman .... production manager
Ollivier Guytard .... assistant unit manager
Jean-Philippe Laroche .... post-production manager
Victor Léocata .... assistant unit manager
Michel Simongiovanni .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Jeanne Guerra .... second second assistant director
Thomas Parnet .... second assistant director
Julien Zidi .... first assistant director
Art Department
Charlotte Bayle .... titles designer
Carine Demongueres .... first assistant art director
Geraldine Scaramela .... assistant art director
Bernon Sebastien .... construction coordinator
Sound Department
Selim Azzazi .... sound editor
Nicolas Bourgeois .... assistant sound editor
Emmanuel Croset .... sound re-recording mixer
Ivan Dumas .... boom operator
Erwan Kerzanet .... sound
Michel Monier .... sound consultant: dolby
Pierre Picq .... boom operator
Hubert Teissedre .... post sync recording engineer
Jean-Alexandre Villemer .... sound recordist
Visual Effects by
Stephane Bidault .... visual effects supervisor
Christophe Lucotte .... color grader
Romain Moussel .... digital effects artist
Bes Paul-Emmanuel .... digital artist
François Poupon .... visual effects artist
Christian Tomikowski .... digital compositor
Camera and Electrical Department
François Coulin .... key grip
Clément Fabre .... second assistant camera
Bertrand Follet .... director of photography: second unit
Vincent Plaidy .... first assistant camera
Xavier Renaudot .... electrician
Xavier Renaudot .... gaffer
Casting Department
Valérie Trajanovski .... casting assistant
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Dorothée Guiraud .... costume supervisor
Chloé Lesueur .... costumer
Mireille Todounou .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
Fabien Napoli .... colorist: dailies
Géraldine Rétif .... assistant editor
Location Management
Florence Franceschi .... location manager
Ollivier Guytard .... location manager
Music Department
Angelo Giovagnoli .... music coordinator
Giovanni Piccardi .... music assistant
Cristina Piovani .... music executive producer
Nicola Piovani .... original music composition and performance
Roma Film Orchestra .... music performed by
Fabio Venturi .... score mixer
Other crew
Maxime Delauney .... production assistant
Sophie Heurzeau .... production assistant
Julien Rambaud .... assistant unit manager
Delphine Régnier .... script supervisor

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Joueuse" - France (original title)
See more »
97 min | USA:101 min | Germany:100 min (European Film Market)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Boom mic visible: Boom mic is visible when Dr. Kröger and Hélène are sitting on his couch.See more »
Movie Connections:


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
4 out of 6 people found the following review useful.
Small, Sweet, Powerful: Cleaning Lady Discovers Dignity and Passion Through Chess, 28 January 2013

"Queen to Play" is a sweet, small, powerful film about a cleaning woman's discovery of passion and dignity through chess. Sandrine Bonnaire plays Helene, a 40 something cleaning woman on the tourist island of Corsica. She's got a nice, handsome, construction worker husband, a snotty teenage daughter struggling through growing pains, an imperious boss at a resort hotel, and a quiet, reasonable, low-rent life.

One day Helene picks up the game of chess, and everything changes. Chess engages her mind and passion. For the sake of learning more about the game, she does things she never would have done, otherwise. She asks a man she cleans for, Dr. Kroger (Kevin Kline) to play with her. The grouchy older man rebuffs her at first, but she offers to clean for free, and he accepts. "Do you always look at people as if your life depended on their answer to your question?" Dr. Kroger asks her.

In fact Helene's life does depend on her newfound passion for chess. Helene demands time to learn about the game. She is distracted in conversations were before she might have listened more sympathetically or joined in petty, local gossip. She schedules hours alone with a man. She answers back to demanding customers at the resort. She snaps at her family, "Would it kill you to cook your own dinner for one night?" Just who does Helene think she is? She is, after all, only a cleaning woman, the chess club president reminds her. His arrogance will not serve him well when he butts up against Helene.

"Queen to Play" is a small film. The script is spare. The film is lovely but not spectacular. Sandrine Bonnaire's great beauty and her performance are its best special effect. I wish there had been a bit more depth and development. But what is here is really powerful. We've gotten so used, in the US, to thinking of injustice and prejudice as being, primarily, about black versus white. "Queen to Play" shows how being a cleaning woman is itself a handicap in society, how expectations can squash a human being, and the price people pay for even the most simple gesture of coloring outside the lines of others' expectations. I admire and like Helene as I do few other film heroines. And I'd love to see Bonnaire play a saint someday. Her face is made for it.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (22 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Queen to Play (2009)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Jennifer Beals looks about 30 plkldf
Location in Corsica jjlasne
Music score--LIfe is Beautiful? jtripper
Relationship?- Mild Spoilers den1003
Telepathy? Really? jland
Does she ever ride her bike UPHILL? Aristotle999
See more »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The Painted Veil Bitter Moon Dodsworth Atonement An Education
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Drama section IMDb France section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.