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The Left-Handed Woman (1977)

Die linkshändige Frau (original title)
After returning from a business trip in Finland, Bruno (Bruno Ganz) find that his wife Marianne (Edith Clever) wants her husband to leave her alone with their son. A struggle with loneliness and adapting to the new situation ensues.


Peter Handke


Peter Handke (novel), Peter Handke (screenplay)
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Edith Clever ... Marianne - Die Frau
Markus Mühleisen Markus Mühleisen ... Stefan - Sohn
Bruno Ganz ... Bruno
Michael Lonsdale ... Kellner (as Michel Lonsdale)
Angela Winkler ... Franziska - Lehrerin
Ines Des Longchamps Ines Des Longchamps ... Frau mit Kind (as Inès de Longchamps)
Philippe Caizergues Philippe Caizergues ... Stefan's Friend
Gérard Depardieu ... Mann mit dem T-Shirt
Bernhard Wicki ... Verleger
Nicholas Novikoff Nicholas Novikoff ... Fahrer
Jany Holt ... Frau im Versammlungslokal (as Janine Holt)
Bernhard Minetti Bernhard Minetti ... Vater
Rüdiger Vogler ... Schauspieler
Hanns Zischler
Simone Benmussa Simone Benmussa


After returning from a business trip in Finland, Bruno (Bruno Ganz) find that his wife Marianne (Edith Clever) wants her husband to leave her alone with their son. A struggle with loneliness and adapting to the new situation ensues.

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Did You Know?


The Left-Handed Woman (1977) was shot in the town Clamart, close to Paris, France. The film is also set there. Director Peter Handke lived in Clamart between 1977 and 1978 with his daughter Amina. See more »


When Marianne and Bruno meet again after their separation and go buying shoes together, the reflection of a boom mic is visible in the window outside the shop. See more »


Features Tokyo Chorus (1931) See more »


Für Elise
Composed by Ludwig van Beethoven
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User Reviews

Film tries hard but doesn't quite work.
27 August 2010 | by mbsSee all my reviews

Honestly not much happens here. An unhappily married woman announces that she wants to leave her husband and takes her son with her...and she does! Movie then spends the rest of its running time observing her fussing and her various efforts at being comfortable living in peace with her young son. (she's a writer and her son keeps interrupting her while she's trying to write) Movie is watchable thanks to its direction and cinematography (some of which is very scenic) and the acting is fine--but there's not a whole lot of momentum here. Eventually Bruno Ganz shows back up (he being the ex husband) but he's clearly happy not being married to the woman anymore--so the film doesn't even have that little bit of tension going for it. If he's happy, and ultimately despite her concerns so is the woman--then why are we watching this???

I did like when her father visited her tho--there's a brief interlude where her father shows up and takes a walk with her through a supermarket where he encounters an actor and tells the actor that he feels that's he's not leaving traces of himself in his roles---"you're like an American actor--you just go from role to role without giving an audience any sense of who you are as a person!" he says--"I look forward to seeing you grow up from film to film in the future." Also Gerard Depardieu shows up quite briefly in one nice long shot while the woman is meeting her father at the train station wearing some ironic t-shirt like a modern day hipster-- and then doesn't speak any lines whatsoever. (the least he could've done was be the actor that the father sees in the supermarket but nope!)

I know someone who really liked this film--but honestly to me it didn't make the inner torment the woman is going through any more cinematic then it should be in order to truly be enlightening or moving to audiences ask to identify with her plight. I have to imagine a lot of this read a lot better on page then it plays on screen.

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Official Sites:

Official Site


West Germany


German | French

Release Date:

26 May 1978 (West Germany) See more »

Also Known As:

A Mulher Canhota See more »

Filming Locations:

France See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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