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The Escapees (1981)

Les paumées du petit matin (original title)
Not Rated | | Adventure, Drama
On the run from an asylum for the insane, a feisty young girl and a forlorn female companion embark on a surreal journey with a group of traveling erotic dancers. Wandering from the fantastic to the farcical and back again,


Jean Rollin


Jacques Ralf (dialogue), Jean Rollin




Cast overview, first billed only:
Laurence Dubas Laurence Dubas ... Michelle
Christiane Coppé Christiane Coppé ... Marie
Marianne Valiot Marianne Valiot ... Sophie (as Marianne Valio)
Patrick Perrot Patrick Perrot ... Pierrot
Louise Dhour Louise Dhour ... Mme Louise
Jean-Louis Fortuit
Jean Hérel Jean Hérel
Claude Lévèque Claude Lévèque
Patricia Mercurol Patricia Mercurol
Brigitte Lahaie ... Femme couple bourgeois
Céline Royce Céline Royce
Jean Philippe Delamarre Jean Philippe Delamarre
Bernard Papineau
Natalie Perrey Natalie Perrey
Pearl June Pearl June


Michelle, a troubled teenager, has been returned to an mental asylum run by nuns after escaping and is put in a straitjacket and then locked in a room. She manages to get the attention of a new patient, Marie, a quiet girl who just seems to sit in the garden in a rocking chair. Marie helps Michelle by removing her straitjacket, and the pair run off together. At first, Michelle wants to leave on her own, but Marie wants to go with her and the two form a tenuous friendship. They follow a group of burlesque dancers who they encounter in an old scrapyard as they roam the countryside. They befriend a thief named Sophie, who helps them escape when the burlesque show is busted. Ending up in a shipyard, they connect with bar owner Madame Louise, who takes in runaways. Sophie convinces her sailor boyfriend to not only stow her away for the next voyage, but the other two as well.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Adventure | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »

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The carnival sequence was shot in a single night. See more »

User Reviews

A long lost masterpiece
24 November 2008 | by bexelibethSee all my reviews

Rollin's 'Les Paumées du petit matin' is finally being released in the UK and US by Redemption Films, re-titled 'The Escapees'. In the same vein as Night of the Hunted and Requiem for a Vampire, Rollin tells the tale of two young runaway girls escaping from an institution.

It might not be as accomplished as some of Rollin's greats, but it contains truly unforgettable scenes, imbued with all the ethereal, surreal qualities of a stylish Rollin masterpiece.

The stunning Britte Lahaie makes an appearance, which is as good a reason as any to buy this film, and Redemption promise an original negative in their release.

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Technical Specs


| (Blu-ray)



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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