6.6/10
8,542
75 user 29 critic

Pretty Baby (1978)

A teenage girl lives as a prostitute in New Orleans in 1917.

Director:

Louis Malle

Writers:

Polly Platt (story), Polly Platt (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Popularity
3,058 ( 376)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A writer returns home from World War I. He has developed a very bad case of post traumatic stress disorder. He contemplates suicide, but becomes interested in the 12 year old niece of the ... See full summary »

Director: Mimmo Cattarinich
Stars: Pierre Clémenti, Katya Berger, Ugo Bologna
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

A teen boy grows from playing and fighting with his German-shepherd dog, to playing kids and adult games with two equally young girls, in a dream-like forest which eventually turns eerie, and somber.

Director: Pier Giuseppe Murgia
Stars: Lara Wendel, Eva Ionesco, Martin Loeb
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

A series of "sex reports" intended to address the issue of pedophilia in the early 1970s.

Director: Ernst Hofbauer
Stars: Harald Baerow, Hans Billian, Ulrike Butz
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

In the Victorian period, two children are shipwrecked on a tropical island in the South Pacific. With no adults to guide them, the two make a simple life together, unaware that sexual maturity will eventually intervene.

Director: Randal Kleiser
Stars: Brooke Shields, Christopher Atkins, Leo McKern
Atlantic City (1980)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In a corrupt city, a small-time gangster and the estranged wife of a pot dealer find themselves thrown together in an escapade of love, money, drugs and danger.

Director: Louis Malle
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Susan Sarandon, Kate Reid
Beau Pere (1981)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After her mother dies, fourteen-year-old Marion falls in love with her stepfather, Remy.

Director: Bertrand Blier
Stars: Patrick Dewaere, Ariel Besse, Maurice Ronet
May Fools (1990)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Like Vanya, in Malle's last film, Milou never left the family estate. His mother dies during the May 1968 student uprising in Paris. The brother who is the London correspondent for Le Monde... See full summary »

Director: Louis Malle
Stars: Miou-Miou, Michel Piccoli, Michel Duchaussoy
L'immoralità (1978)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Federico is a child-killer running from the law. Wounded, he is taken in by a 12 year old girl named Simona. Their strange love affair is interrupted by Simona's depressed, oversexed mother... See full summary »

Director: Massimo Pirri
Stars: Lisa Gastoni, Howard Ross, Karin Trentephol
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Sculptor Paul meets a former great love again after a long time -- but is much more impressed by her 15-year-old daughter, Laura, who looks like her mother when Paul was in love with her. ... See full summary »

Director: David Hamilton
Stars: Maud Adams, Dawn Dunlap, James Mitchell
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In the criminal and violent world of modern-day Gypsies based in New York City, their 'king' Zharko Stepanowicz passes his leadership to his unwilling grandson, leaving the skipped father resentful.

Director: Frank Pierson
Stars: Eric Roberts, Judd Hirsch, Susan Sarandon
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Documentation, drama and interviews about sex education. Touches on issues of homosexuality and first sexual experiences of children.

Directors: Eberhardt Kronhausen, Phyllis Kronhausen
Stars: Marie Antoinette, John Bowen, Richard Bright
Viva Maria! (1965)
Adventure | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Somewhere in Central America in 1907: Maria II is the daughter of an Irish terrorist. After her father's death, she meets Maria I, a singer in a circus. She decides to stay with the circus,... See full summary »

Director: Louis Malle
Stars: Brigitte Bardot, Jeanne Moreau, George Hamilton
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brooke Shields ... Violet
Keith Carradine ... Bellocq
Susan Sarandon ... Hattie
Frances Faye ... Nell
Antonio Fargas ... Professor
Matthew Anton Matthew Anton ... Red Top
Diana Scarwid ... Frieda
Barbara Steele ... Josephine
Seret Scott Seret Scott ... Flora
Cheryl Markowitz Cheryl Markowitz ... Gussie
Susan Manskey Susan Manskey ... Fanny
Laura Zimmerman Laura Zimmerman ... Agnes
Miz Mary Miz Mary ... Odette
Gerrit Graham ... Highpockets
Mae Mercer Mae Mercer ... Mama Mosebery
Edit

Storyline

In 1917, in the red light district Storyville, New Orleans, the prostitute Hattie lives with her twelve year-old daughter Violet in the fancy brothel of Madame Nell, where she works. Photographer Ernest J. Bellocq has an attraction to Hallie and Violet and he is an habitué of the whorehouse. One day, Madame Nell auctions Violet's virginity and the winner pays the fortune of US$ 400 to spend the night with the girl. Then Hattie marries a wealthy client and moves to Saint Louis, leaving Violet in the brothel alone. Violet decides to marry Bellocq and she moves to his house. Until the day that Hattie, who has overcome her past, comes to Bellocq's house with the intention to take Violet with her. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

1917. The red-light district of New Orleans. The story of the women. The photographer. And the prostitute's daughter. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 April 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Niña bonita See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$5,786,368
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Jennifer Jason Leigh did an audition for the role of Violet. See more »

Goofs

In the final scene, E.J. Bellocq pictures Violet with a Kodak No. 2 Portrait Brownie, which wasn't available until 1929. See more »

Quotes

Violet: You think of me as a child.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The closing credits include a card that states, "With our gratitude for the priceless music of FERDINAND "JELLY ROLL" MORTON." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Michael Palin/Eugene Record (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

Tiger Rag
(uncredited)
Written by Edwin B. Edwards, Nick LaRocca, Tony Sbarbaro, Henry Ragas and Larry Shields
Performed by Antonio Fargas
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
An incredibly frank but humane movie of the type that doesn't seem to be made anymore.
9 June 2005 | by Ham_and_EggerSee all my reviews

A beautifully filmed movie which tells a difficult story with a subtlety and power that leaves you thinking about it during odd moments for days. It's that much more disconcerting because all the while you're keenly aware that this isn't based on "a true story" but on millions of true stories throughout history, including today, and in every part of the globe.

Due to my age I'd never seen 'Pretty Baby' in the theater or, for some reason, read much about it. I was aware of the basic plot but didn't know I'd be seeing quite so much of a naked 12 year-old Brooke Shields. A couple of moments were honestly difficult for me to watch, but I've come to the conclusion that the nudity is absolutely essential to the telling of the story. You *have* to be forced to see exactly what those men were paying for.

The brilliance of director Loius Malle's film is that he constantly subverts the audience's desire to be aghast at what we see. The camera finds happy little moments throughout the movie, your mind is left to fill in the ugly realities. This trend continues to the end, which is like a cruel mirror image of the typical happily ever after Hollywood ending.


55 of 59 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 75 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed