A young couple moves in to an apartment only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins to control her life.
In Paris, the shy bureaucrat Trelkovsky rents an old apartment without bathroom where the previous tenant, the Egyptologist Simone Choule, committed suicide. The unfriendly concierge (Shelley Winters) and the tough landlord Mr. Zy establish stringent rules of behavior and Trelkovsky feels ridden by his neighbors. Meanwhile he visits Simone in the hospital and befriends her girlfriend Stella. After the death of Simone, Trelkovsky feels obsessed for her and believes his landlord and neighbors are plotting a scheme to force him to also commit suicide.Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
When Trelkovsky is unpacking as he moves into the apartment, a crew member is reflected in the small mirror adjacent to the kitchen sink. Two crew members are then reflected in the armoire's mirror as Trelkovsky opens it. See more »
[talking to himself]
[he opens a box and takes out a pair of shoes]
Oh! My! Where did you find these? They are beautiful! A size 68? I had *no* idea!
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The film has no end credits; only the Paramount logo. See more »
Although the UK cinema version was complete the 1986 CIC video was cut by 6 secs by the BBFC to remove a brief extract of the banned nunchaku scene from Enter the Dragon (seen by Trelkovsky and Stella during a cinema visit). The cuts were fully waived in the 2004 Paramount DVD. See more »
A Kafkaesque thriller of alienation and paranoia. Extremely well done and Polanski performs well as the diffident introvert trying hard to adapt to his dingy Paris lodgings and his fellow lodgers. Horrifying early on because of the seeming mean and self obsessed fellow tenants and horrifying later on as he develops his defences which will ultimately be his undoing. Personally I could have done without the cross dressing element but I accept the nod to Psycho and the fact that it had some logic, bearing in mind the storyline. Nevertheless it could have worked without and would have removed the slightly theatrical element, but then maybe that was intended because the courtyard certainly seems to take on the look of a theatre at the end. I can't help feel that there are more than a few of the director's own feelings of not being a 'real' Frenchman and Jewish to boot. Still, there is plenty to enjoy here including a fine performance from a gorgeous looking Isabelle Adjani and good old Shelly Winters is as reliable as ever.
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