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The Nun (1966)

La religieuse (original title)
GP | | Drama | 8 July 1971 (USA)
Trailer
1:33 | Trailer
In eighteenth-century France a girl (Suzanne Simonin) is forced against her will to take vows as a nun. Three mothers superior (Madame de Moni, Sister Sainte-Christine, and Madame de ... See full summary »

Director:

Jacques Rivette

Writers:

Denis Diderot (novel), Jean Gruault | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anna Karina ... Suzanne
Liselotte Pulver ... Mme de Chelles
Micheline Presle ... Mme de Moni
Francine Bergé Francine Bergé ... Soeur Sainte-Christine
Francisco Rabal ... Dom Morel
Christiane Lénier Christiane Lénier ... Mme Simonin
Yori Bertin ... Soeur Saint-Thérèse
Catherine Diamant Catherine Diamant ... Soeur Saint-Ursule
Gilette Barbier ... Soeur Saint-Jean
Annik Morice Annik Morice ... Soeur Saint-Jéròme
Danielle Palmero Danielle Palmero ... Soeur Saint-Clément
Françoise Godde Françoise Godde ... La domestique
Jean Martin ... Monsieur Hébert
Marc Eyraud Marc Eyraud ... Le père Seraphin
Charles Millot Charles Millot ... Monsieur Simonin
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Storyline

In eighteenth-century France a girl (Suzanne Simonin) is forced against her will to take vows as a nun. Three mothers superior (Madame de Moni, Sister Sainte-Christine, and Madame de Chelles) treat her in radically different ways, ranging from maternal concern, to sadistic persecution, to lesbian desire. Suzanne's virtue brings disaster to everyone in this faithful adaptation of a bitter attack on religious abuses by the Enlightenment philosopher Denis Diderot. Written by English Showalter <showalte@crab.rutgers.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

persecution | france | vow | girl | lesbian | See All (95) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

8 July 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Nun See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Goofs

Suzanne plays and sings the song "Plaisir D'Amour". The final title card identifies the time and place as 'Paris, 1760', but the song was not composed until 1785. See more »

Connections

Referenced in La Chinoise (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

Plaisir D'Amour
Music by Johann Martini (as Jean Paul Egide Schwarzendorf a.k.a. "Jean Martini")
Lyrics by Jean-Pierre Claris de Florian
See more »

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User Reviews

Liselotte Pulver is STUNNING, nothing but STUNNING
13 August 2004 | by jandewittSee all my reviews

Playing a role that few people thought would ever fit her and shadowed by vultures predicting disaster, Liselotte Pulver delivered the surprise coup of many a cinematic season in the icily directed 'La Religieuse'.

Ms. Pulver, the beloved eternal comedienne of the German cinema, has taken on that most daunting role: the lesbian Mother Superior, the ultimate debauched nun in the ultimate 'Why was the Revolution necessary?' tale, Denis Diderot's grand tale 'La Religieuse'. Working against type and expectation under the direction of Jaques Rivette, Ms. Pulver has created the most complex and compelling portrait of her long career, and she has done this in ways that deviate radically from her former screen roles.

Ms. Pulver's Mother Superior, emerges in this adaptation with her monumental weakness intact. But something new and affecting is simmering within the character, a damning glimpse of self-awareness. You get the sense that if her frantic movement stops for a second, she'll deflate into a small and bitter creature.

In films like 'Die Züricher Verlobung' and 'Das Wirtshaus I'm Spessart' Ms. Pulver's persona has always been that of a delectable waif, a vulnerable creature with a heart of gold. Here she was cast against type and rumors went that she did not get along with Mr. Rivette. And then, halfway through the film, there she was, and for the first time in her long career she didn't look remotely like an ingénue.

Ms. Pulver's portrait is so intimate and persuasive that you aren't allowed to step back and think, 'What a monster she is.' That's because, thanks to this actress's willingness to turn herself and her character inside out, you've been inside her mind. What a sad and fascinating place it is.


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