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The Captive (2000)

La captive (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Music, Romance | 27 September 2000 (France)
An adaptation of Proust's "La Prisoniere" (book five of "Remembrance of Things Past"). Set in Paris, France, it is a serious tale of a tragic and dysfunctional love.


Chantal Akerman


Chantal Akerman (scenario), Eric De Kuyper (scenario) | 1 more credit »
3 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Stanislas Merhar ... Simon
Sylvie Testud ... Ariane
Olivia Bonamy ... Andrée
Liliane Rovère ... Françoise, the maid
Françoise Bertin Françoise Bertin ... The grandmother
Aurore Clément ... Léa, the actress
Vanessa Larré Vanessa Larré ... Hélène
Samuel Tasinaje Samuel Tasinaje ... Levy
Jean Borodine Jean Borodine ... The chauffeur
Anna Mouglalis ... Isabelle
Bérénice Bejo ... Sarah
Adeline Chaudron Adeline Chaudron ... Prostitute
Sophie Assante Sophie Assante ... The singing woman
Christopher Gendreau Christopher Gendreau ... Bellboy
Sébastien Haddouk Sébastien Haddouk ... Painter


An adaptation of Proust's "La Prisoniere" (book five of "Remembrance of Things Past"). Set in Paris, France, it is a serious tale of a tragic and dysfunctional love.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Music | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Chosen by "Les Cahiers du cinéma" (France) as one of the 10 best pictures of 2000 (#02). See more »


Simon: When it gets finer, we could go to Venice or Vienna.
Ariane: If you like.
See more »


Featured in Women Make Film: A New Road Movie Through Cinema (2018) See more »


Extrait de 'COSI FAN TUTTE
(Duetto Dorabella/Fiordiligi: Ed intanto che diletto, che spassetto io provero)
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (as W.A Mozart)
Lyrics by Lorenzo da Ponte (uncredited)
See more »

User Reviews

Craves indulgence
22 May 2017 | by federovskySee all my reviews

Modern day adaptation of a section of Proust's magnum opus that is true enough to the book in its theme and events and interestingly has the Marcel character still sunk in an archaic, aristocratic world.

KD Lang lookalike Stanislas Merhar does a good job doing the insulated, emotional (and physical) frailty, trapped in an adolescent infatuation of towering poetic naivety, all the while consumed with jealousy by the suspicion that his live-in girlfriend is an active lesbian behind his back.

It's slow. There's a lot of prowling around his creaking Paris apartment, lots of talking in cars - we seem to be taking entire journeys in real time. Akerman gave herself an easy directing job. The use of classical music is lazy - Schubert's Arpeggione Sonata is suitably Proustian, but Rachmaninov's Isle of the Dead is absurdly melodramatic, especially when played incongruously, Godard-fashion, over serene images.

Those familiar with the writer and director can easily pull back the gauze to reveal the real issues - an inverted couple struggling to maintain a hetero relationship - but that is so superficial it hardly seems worth special effort and the film works better with the ambiguity in place (as intended), with the implication that naivety (misunderstanding, confusion) is at the root of jealous passion. The Marcel character is so naïve that in the sex scenes he doesn't even know that he is supposed to put it in - doing the movements without getting undressed (he's in bed in his overcoat in one scene). That was strangely tragic, and although it may have been a stylisation to symbolise their failure to connect, it was easier to take it literally.

With liberties like that though, and done so earnestly, it's craves some indulgence. The worst problem is that the girl is comatose and unattractive, showing nothing of Albertine's sprightliness and guile that gave that character her painful duplicity. The ending too is a disappointment.

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France | Belgium



Release Date:

27 September 2000 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

La cautiva See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (Buenos Aires Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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