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The Bitch Wants Blood (1969)

La femme écarlate (original title)
Comedy about self-made woman (Vitti) in Paris contemplating the idea of suicide at first, then murder.


Jean Valère

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Monica Vitti ... Eva
Maurice Ronet ... François
Robert Hossein ... Julien
Claudio Brook ... John Bert
Albert Simono Albert Simono ... (as Simono)
Lucien Raimbourg Lucien Raimbourg
Monique Mélinand Monique Mélinand ... Medium
Simone Bach Simone Bach
Robert Rollis Robert Rollis
Sabine Sun
Colette Gérard Colette Gérard
Antonio Passalia Antonio Passalia
Stéphane Stéphane
François de Lannurien François de Lannurien
Gérard Lartigau Gérard Lartigau ... Tommy


Comedy about self-made woman (Vitti) in Paris contemplating the idea of suicide at first, then murder.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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France | Italy


French | English

Release Date:

14 May 1969 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Bitch Wants Blood See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Referenced in The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1970) See more »

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User Reviews

THE SCARLET LADY (Jean Valere, 1969) **1/2
10 June 2007 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

Lightweight but colorful fluff about an attractive Italian young woman (Monica Vitti) who is jilted by her French lover/business partner (Robert Hossein) and goes away to Paris with the intention of committing suicide but then thinks better of it and decides to bump the latter off instead. In the meantime, to curb her boredom, she picks up a marine salvage expert (Maurice Ronet) but immediately dumps him after divulging all her plans to him during a romantic dinner atop the Eiffel Tower. Somehow, while posing as a Swiss journalist, she gets entangled with a New York correspondent (a woefully wasted Claudio Brook), a shady Spaniard and the dope-addled manager of a French beat group; the latter perform a couple of awfully dated pop tunes and Brook's presence in a nightclub immediately brought to mind the similar but infinitely more wicked sequence which brilliantly concludes Luis Bunuel's SIMON OF THE DESERT (1965) in which Brook had the title role.

Frankly, I had never heard of this one before it was pointed out to me at the local DVD rental store (via an Italian-dubbed version on R2 DVD) but the eclectic cast and a promise of a dash of psychedelia enticed me to give it a chance. Well, while it's certainly nothing I'd call remotely essential, it's quite a nice way to kill 90 minutes: Monica Vitti's classical beauty and charm is the film's ace card as she's in virtually every scene in various fetching Christian Dior outfits, but Michel Colombier's bubbly Morriconesque score (including a recurring mournful ballad) also makes quite an impression. While the names in the credits of his regular producer (Andre Genoves) and screenwriter (Paul Gegauff) should perhaps have alerted me to it, director Claude Chabrol's amusing uncredited cameo as a lift attendant on the Eiffel Tower took me completely by surprise.

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