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My Night at Maud's (1969)

Ma nuit chez Maud (original title)
The rigid principles of a devout Catholic man are challenged during a one-night stay with Maud, a divorced woman with an outsize personality.

Director:

Éric Rohmer

Writer:

Éric Rohmer
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jean-Louis Trintignant ... Jean-Louis
Françoise Fabian ... Maud
Marie-Christine Barrault ... Françoise
Antoine Vitez ... Vidal
Léonide Kogan ... Concert Violinist
Guy Léger Guy Léger ... Priest (as Guy Leger)
Anne Dubot Anne Dubot ... Blonde Friend
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Storyline

Thirty-four year old engineer Jean-Louis has just started a new job in Clermont. He leads a relatively solitary life not knowing anyone in town besides his work colleagues, he who has made a conscious decision that they should not become his de facto friends just because they work together. His choice not to socialize in town is due also in part to his situation and needing to make the long daily commute to/from Ceyrat where he currently lives. He has had his fair share of women over the course of his adult life, he now choosing to adhere more closely to his Catholic beliefs in approaching romantic and sexual relationships with women solely in the goal of love and marriage. Although not knowing her or having talked to her, he believes the pretty blonde he sees at church at Sunday morning services is the woman destined to be his wife. Within this situation of his new life, he has lately been reading the writings of Blaise Pascal, the mixture of mathematics and Catholicism in particular... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

22 March 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

My Night at Maud's See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #345. See more »

Goofs

When Trintignant accepts to climb into bed with Fabian, he motions for her to pass him the blanket, extending his right hand holding a lit cigarette. The next shot from the side shows him grasping the blanket with a cigarette-free right hand. See more »

Quotes

Maud: I am nasty, too.
See more »

Connections

Follows La Collectionneuse (1967) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Intellectual meditation of faith
9 May 2011 | by tomgillespie2002See all my reviews

Jean-Louis (Jean-Louis Trintignant) is a recently converted devout Catholic, who at the beginning of the film, falls in love with a beautiful blonde named Francois (Marie-Christine Barrault) in Church. He follows her, but loses her in traffic. He meets old friend Vidal (Antoine Vitez) by chance in a restaurant and the two talk about their views on philosophy, religion and mathematics. They go to the house of Maud (Francois Fabian), a flirtatious, free-spirited woman who takes an interest in Jean-Louis. When the snow falls heavier outside, Jean-Louis is forced to spend the night at Maud's, putting a strain on his new found beliefs on marriage, commitment and fidelity.

Eric Rohmer's film is full of dialogue. The characters talk and talk, often so intellectually that I had trouble keeping up. But the talk is interesting and intriguing. The main theme (it appeared to me, anyway) is the value of faith in a world where the likelihood of heaven is becoming increasingly unlikely. Jean-Louis, a former ladies man, fights his urges when Maud invites him into her bed. He eventually climbs in, feeling the cold, and begins to kiss her. He eventually pulls away, looking almost angry with himself. He obviously feels that an eternity in heaven, however unlikely the idea is, is worth more than a moment of weakness and happiness.

The dialogue-heavy scenes may not appeal to everyone, it can at times be difficult to engage with the film and bourgeois characters. But it is richly rewarding and a highly intelligent character study. The film has an almost love/hate attitude to the idea of Christianity in a similar way to many of Bergman's greatest films. One of the most intellectually stimulating films of the French New Wave movement.

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