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After marrying successful Parisian writer Henry Gauthier-Villars, known commonly as "Willy" (Dominic West), 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. Colette, in turn, pens a semi-autobiographical novel about a witty and brazen country girl named Claudine, sparking a bestseller and a cultural sensation. After it's 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.Written by
According to Keira Knightley, it was illegal for women to wear men's clothing in that time period in France. See more »
At the start of the film the Wisteria is in bloom suggesting that it is late spring, however Colette's mother asks her to pick some Blackberries, which would not be ripe for picking until late summer/early autumn. See more »
My name is Gabrielle Colette and the hand that holds the pen writes history.
See more »
There is a dedication to Richard Glatzer, who co-wrote the film's screenplay with Wash Westmoreland, shortly before the closing credits: "For Richard". See more »
Acting is Top Notch But the Movie Could Use an Infusion of Dramatic Tension
The acting here is top notch all around, led by Knightley and West. But I can see how many reviewers were turned off by this very much dialogue driven movie. The film, in my opinion, could have used a big infusion of dramatic tension, so although I was interested in the characters I never was able to invest emotionally in them.
Finally, why the filmmakers chose to show us virtually nothing of the enormous successes Colette (Knightley) went on to later in life (as I had to read about it in the postscripts) I have no idea. They seemed more interested in showing us much more of her sexual preferences. One final thought, I thought it was funny how the Claudine novels basically went "viral" over 100 years before its current meaning in our world of computers and social media.
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