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Chéri (2009)

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The son of a courtesan retreats into a fantasy world after being forced to end his relationship with the older woman who educated him in the ways of love.

Director:

Stephen Frears

Writers:

Christopher Hampton, Colette (novels)
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michelle Pfeiffer ... Lea
Frances Tomelty ... Rose
Tom Burke ... Vicomte Desmond
Rupert Friend ... Chéri
Hubert Tellegen Hubert Tellegen ... Ernest
Joe Sheridan ... Marcel
Kathy Bates ... Madame Peloux
Toby Kebbell ... Patron
Felicity Jones ... Edmée
Iben Hjejle ... Marie Laure
Alain Churin Alain Churin ... Priest
Bette Bourne ... Baronne
Nichola McAuliffe Nichola McAuliffe ... Madame Aldonza
Andras Hamori Andras Hamori ... Silver Haired Industrialist
Gaye Brown Gaye Brown ... Lili
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Storyline

During France's belle époque before World War I, elegant cars, mansions, and servants defined the lives of les grandes horizontals, the courtesans of kings and millionaires. One of the most successful, Lea de Lonval, is approaching a certain age when an older associate, Charlotte Peloux, asks Lea to take on her 19 year old son, whom Lea has called Chéri since he was a child. They become lovers and, to their surprise, the relationship lasts six years. When it ends abruptly with a marriage his mother arranges to the daughter of another courtesan, Lea finds herself lonely. Has she fallen in love? If so, do she -- and Chéri - have any choices? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Indulge in a wicked game of seduction. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexual content and brief drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site | Official site [Japan] | See more »

Country:

UK | France | Germany

Language:

English | French | Latin | Italian

Release Date:

17 July 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cheri See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$23,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£120,234 (United Kingdom), 10 May 2009, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$405,701, 28 June 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,708,188, 21 August 2009
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Iben Hjejle was personally called up by director Stephen Frears and didn't know she was going to star opposite big Hollywood names before she began filming her first scene. See more »

Goofs

In the closing credits, 'thanks' are given to France's national railway, the Societe National Chemin de Fer, known as the "SNCF". However the credits have the letters out of sequence, calling it the "SCNF". See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: We may think ourselves familiar in this day and age with the notion that whores of every description can very easily achieve fame and fortune. But towards the end of the 19th century, there what came to be known in France as the "Belle Epoque", a select group of courtesans, who became for a short period, the most celebrated and powerful women in the long history of prostitution.
See more »

Connections

Version of Chéri (1950) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
refined and melancholic
11 September 2009 | by yris2002See all my reviews

"Cheri" is the nickname given by Lea (Michelle Pfeiffer) to the young, much younger Fred, whom she brings to discover the truth about lovemaking, and unintentionally but inevitably, about loving. The actor playing Fred is handsome, attractive, but who really hits the sign (as usually, I would say) is Michelle Pfeiffer, who proved to be very courageous in playing a role where she constantly repeats to herself how old she is. Indeed, her beauty, elegance and refinement are always there to remind her and us how difficult it is to come to terms with ageing, mainly when beauty has been the very essence of your life.

The plot is almost absent, being the story more based on emotions, moods, sensations, rather than facts, and the movie in the end manages to capture the viewer, thanks to its capability to render the emotional side through glances and through effective and intense framing of both characters and situations: the last one is incisive, almost paralyzing.

Ironic and funny moments are not absent, mainly when Cathy Bates, playing the odd, high spirited mother, enters the scene, but the overall tone is a melancholic one, above all for the female public, we cannot but sympathize with Lea's inner strength, and at the same time feel moved by her deep suffering. From an aesthetic point of view, the movie is to be visually appreciated for its pleasant settings, its refined costumes and in general for a deep care for precious details.


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