7.3/10
678
11 user 22 critic

Secret défense (1998)

Sylvie, a 30-year-old scientist, has to dig deeper and deeper into her own background.

Director:

Jacques Rivette

Writers:

Pascal Bonitzer (scenario), Emmanuelle Cuau (scenario) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Drama | Fantasy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Julien lives alone with his cat. He dreams of Marie, and a few minutes later, he sees her on the street and makes a date. He asks her to move in with him, and she does. Her boyfriend is ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Emmanuelle Béart, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Anne Brochet
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In France, terrorist groups and intelligence agencies battle in a merciless war everyday, in the name of radically opposed ideologies. Yet, terrorist and secret agents lead almost the same ... See full summary »

Director: Philippe Haïm
Stars: Gérard Lanvin, Vahina Giocante, Nicolas Duvauchelle
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Quick-witted, well-read cultured types revolve around each other in a delightful potpourri of theatre, romanticism and theft.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Jeanne Balibar, Sergio Castellitto, Marianne Basler
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Biopic based on the life of author Raymond Roussel.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Jane Birkin, Sergio Castellitto, André Marcon
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A part of Joan of Arc's life. At the beginning, Jeanne (Joan) has already left Domremy, she is trying to convince a captain to escort her to the Dauphin. It ends during Jeanne's first ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Tatiana Moukhine, Sandrine Bonnaire, Jean-Marie Richier
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The former famous painter Frenhofer revisits an abandoned project using the girlfriend of a young visiting artist. Questions about truth, life, and artistic limits are explored.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Michel Piccoli, Jane Birkin, Emmanuelle Béart
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Anne Goupil is a literature student in Paris in 1957. Her elder brother, Pierre, takes her to a friend's party where the guests include Philip Kaufman, an expatriate American escaping ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Betty Schneider, Giani Esposito, Françoise Prévost
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In Majorca, in 1823, a French general, Armand de Montriveau, overhears a cloistered nun singing in a chapel; he insists on speaking to her. She is Antoinette, for five years he has searched... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Jeanne Balibar, Guillaume Depardieu, Bulle Ogier
Comedy | Musical | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Adventures of three young women in a hot and lazy Paris in summer.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Marianne Denicourt, Nathalie Richard, Laurence Côte
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A play within a play within a play within a play. Actors perform a play in a house, an audience member invites them to work in his own home improvising a play around his own life. The line between fiction and reality blur.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Jane Birkin, Geraldine Chaplin, André Dussollier
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Young unhinged female ex-con with a motorcycle helps a sickly young homeless woman in red discover what the map of Paris she took from her gangster boyfriend leads to.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Bulle Ogier, Pascale Ogier, Pierre Clémenti
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A drama following 4 women at stage school. Considered by some to be the summation of director Jacques Rivette's work as a whole.

Director: Jacques Rivette
Stars: Bulle Ogier, Benoît Régent, Fejria Deliba
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Sandrine Bonnaire ... Sylvie
Jerzy Radziwilowicz ... Walser
Grégoire Colin ... Paul
Laure Marsac ... Véronique / Ludivine
Françoise Fabian ... Geneviève
Christine Vouilloz Christine Vouilloz ... Myriam
Mark Saporta Mark Saporta ... Jules
Sara Louis Sara Louis ... Carole
Hermine Karagheuz Hermine Karagheuz ... L'infirmière
Bernadette Giraud Bernadette Giraud ... Marthe
Micheline Herzog Micheline Herzog ... Sabine
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Patrick Le Bouar Patrick Le Bouar ... Robert
Edit

Storyline

A young biologist (Sylvie) is thrown into confusion when her brother (Paul) tries to persuade her that their father, who fell off a train five years ago, was actually killed by his right hand man (Walser). Walser now runs their father's company. Sylvie is not convinced, but Paul has decided to have his revenge. Written by Thierry Rubis <thb@Yours.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

family relationships | See All (1) »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

1 October 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Confidencial See more »

Filming Locations:

Chagny, Saône-et-Loire, France See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Connections

Features Brigands-Chapter VII (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Diferencias sobre las Vacas
(anonyme)
Performed by Hespèrion Xx (as Hesperion XX)
Conducted by Jordi Savall
(P) Auvidis-France
extrait de "El cancionero de Medinaceli"
(CD Auvidis-Fontalis E 8764)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Vertiguious
17 July 2005 | by tedgSee all my reviews

You know a movie is a great movie not when it is quoted. Many are. It is great when following filmmakers assume it as part of the world and reinvent it the same way they do to experiences in "real" life. I'm not as wild about Hitchcock's complete work as others, but "Vertigo" and another of his films are among the most important and surely on any short list from Hollywood.

I've had the pleasure of screening "Vertigo" together with two of its most interesting children.

First, you know the story in Vertigo, about a play within the play that is a more like a play within life. The way it is constructed (except for that dumb camera trick that everyone fawns over) emphasizes manifold details about illusion and the illusion of film-making.

But the thing is abstracted from life, as all normal movies must be. We know from thousands of conventions when watching that it is a staging of life, not life.

There's one scene in Vertigo, where our hero discovers his love in a restaurant. There's a change in color and mood. Peter Greenway took this one scene and layered a whole new film reality on "Vertigo." It is as abstracted from the world of Vertigo as Vertigo is from life.

In Greenaway's "Cook, Thief, Lover," the world is indeed bifurcated into the "kitchen" where things are created and the "serving room." Moving from one to the other changes colors in accord with Vertigo. "Cook, Thief" deals with the same issues as Vertigo but with more abstraction: books, love and watching movies as literally eating people.

Now we have this, which moves to the other side. It attempts to deal with all the issues and methods of "Vertigo" but by deabstracting into the real world. In the real world, events do not arrange themselves for theatrical convenience. If we need a character to go from the city to the country to do a killing, it takes some time.

Accidents occur. Some motives never become clear. When a murdered girl's twin shows up and takes the place of her sister in the bed of a conspiratorial man with an officially secret life, we expect plot turns and surprises. They never come. This is life embossed with a movie.

That is, until the very, very last scene. This is extremely stylized as if to gently bring us back to the movie world we thought we were entering at the beginning.

There are few French filmmakers of any era worth following. This is one.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.


10 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 11 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed