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Colette is pushed by her husband to write novels under his name. Upon their success, she fights to make her talents known, challenging gender norms.

Director:

Wash Westmoreland

Writers:

Richard Glatzer (screenplay by), Wash Westmoreland (screenplay by) | 2 more credits »
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126 ( 15)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Keira Knightley ... Colette
Eleanor Tomlinson ... Georgie Raoul-Duval
Dominic West ... Willy
Fiona Shaw ... Sido
Aiysha Hart ... Polaire
Denise Gough ... Missy
Al Weaver ... Schwob
Robert Pugh ... Jules
Rebecca Root ... Rachilde
Ray Panthaki ... Veber
Shannon Tarbet ... Meg
Caroline Boulton ... Flossy
Dickie Beau ... Wague
Arabella Weir ... Mme De Caillavet
Janine Harouni ... Jeanne De Caillavet
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Storyline

After marrying a successful Parisian writer known commonly as "Willy" (Dominic West), Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette (Keira Knightley) is transplanted from her childhood home in rural France to the intellectual and artistic splendor of Paris. Soon after, Willy convinces Colette to ghostwrite for him. She pens a semi-autobiographical novel about a witty and brazen country girl named Claudine, sparking a bestseller and a cultural sensation. After its success, Colette and Willy become the talk of Paris and their adventures inspire additional Claudine novels. Colette's fight over creative ownership and gender roles drives her to overcome societal constraints, revolutionizing literature, fashion and sexual expression. Directed by Wash Westmoreland and written by Wash Westmoreland, Richard Glatzer, Rebecca Lenkiewicz. Written by Bleecker Street

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 January 2019 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Colette See more »

Filming Locations:

Budapest, Hungary See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$161,179, 23 September 2018, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$3,788,528, 22 October 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Westmoreland had originally written the script in 2001, but could not get the film made at that time. See more »

Goofs

While the Douglas Fir certainly is native to North America, it doesn't mean it couldn't be grown in some other part of the worlds, even in France - from seed or a transplant, for example. There are also the Japanese Douglas-fir, the Chinese Douglas Fir, and the Yunnan Douglas-fir. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Watch it for the stellar performance by Keira Knightley
16 October 2018 | by paul-allaerSee all my reviews

"Colette" is a biopic about noted French writer Gabrielle Colette. As the movie opens, we are in "Saint Sauveur 1892" where Colette is in a passionate relationship with an older guy nicknamed "Willy" (whose real name we don't know), an entrepreneur/writer/publisher/womanizer. Next we are in "Paris 1893", and the two are now married, and feeling at home as socialites. As always, they need more money to support their life style, and one day, at the encouragement of Willy, Colette writes a book loosely based on her own childhood and youth, "Claudine At School". Published under the nom-de-plume Willy, the book is an unexpected critical and commercial success... At this point we are 15 min. into the movie but to tell you more of the plot would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how t all plays out.

Couple of comments: this is the latest movie from UK director (and co-writer) Wash Westmoreland, whose previous film was the Oscar-winning "Still Alice". Here he brings the improbable story of Gabrielle Colette to the big screen. Given the many twists and turns that she encountered in her life, some (but certainly not all) of which are reflected in the movie, I don't want to say a whole lot more about that, so as not to spoil your viewing experience. Do allow me to alert you to the fact that Colette was nominated for the Nobel Prize of Literature in 1948, a fact that is never even mentioned in the movie, not even in the closing moments as to what became of her in later years (the movie covers roughly the years 1892-1905). "Colette" is, as a movie, neither a masterpiece nor a disaster. That is not a strong recommendation obviously, but it's still worth checking out for the stellar performance of Keira Knightley in the title role. It seems as is Knightley threw herself into this role without holding anything back. Dominic West, as Willy, does quite well too but of course plays an inherent unlikable character. I also have to say that I found it a bit off-putting to see all of these characters, living in France, reading French language newspapers, writing French language letters and diaries, etc. all speak... English.

"Colette" premiered to good acclaim at this year's Sundance film festival. It finally opened recently at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati. The early evening screening where I saw this at was attended nicely (and mostly by seniors for some reason). If you are interested in finding out more about one of the best French female authors of the 20th century, even if the film is far from perfect, I'd recommend you check this out, be it at the theater, on VOD, or eventually on DVD/Blu-ray, and draw your own conclusion.


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