Patrice Leconte – La veuve de Saint-Pierre AKA The Widow of St. Pierre (2000)


Though set in the French colony of St Pierre and Miquelon, the movie was filmed on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. The French title La Veuve de Saint-Pierre contains wordplay. “Veuve” translates to “Widow”. In the 1800s the word was also slang for a guillotine.

The Widow of Saint-Pierre (French: La veuve de Saint-Pierre) is a 2000 film by Patrice Leconte with Juliette Binoche, Daniel Auteuil and Emir Kusturica. The film made its North American debut at the 2000 Toronto Film Festival where it won the Audience Award. It was nominated for a Golden Globe Award in 2001 for Best Foreign Language Film. The film was also nominated in 2001 for two César Awards.

In 1879, on the small French island of Saint-Pierre off the coast of Newfoundland, Neel Auguste (Emir Kusturica) and his friend carry a joke too far while they are drunk and murder a man. The friend dies in an accident on the way to prison. Neel is put into the custody of the Captain (Daniel Auteuil), a military officer whose wife Madame La (Juliette Binoche) is the most beautiful woman on the island. Kind-hearted and compassionate, she takes Neel on as her protégé, teaching him to read, work in the garden with her, and perform odd jobs for widows in the community. Continue reading

Patrice Leconte – Confidences trop intimes AKA Intimate Strangers (2004)


Erotic Suspense After Mistaken Identity

In Patrice Leconte’s sardonic psychological thriller, ”Intimate Strangers,” Sandrine Bonnaire portrays a Gallic answer to one of Alfred Hitchcock’s sleek blond women of mystery. Imagine the Grace Kelly of ”Rear Window” or the Kim Novak of ”Vertigo” sprawled seductively on an analyst’s couch, smoking cigarettes and confiding her sexual frustration to a repressed, wide-eyed shrink who is obsessed with her.

”Intimate Strangers,” directed by Mr. Leconte from a screenplay by Jérôme Tonnerre, establishes its mood of playful erotic suspense in the first 10 minutes and sustains its cat-and-mouse game between therapist and patient through variations that are by turns amusing, titillating and mildly scary.
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Patrice Leconte – La Fille sur le pont aka The Girl on the Bridge (1999)


Allmovie synopsis:

A woman’s long history of bad luck starts to change when she puts her life on the line in this romantic drama. Adèle (Vanessa Paradis) is a 22-year-old woman whose life seems to have been a long series of miscalculations; she’s never had much luck with love, life, or career, and is standing on a bridge overlooking the Seine one night, contemplating suicide, when she’s approached by a man named Gabor (Daniel Auteuil). Gabor announces he’s a knife-thrower who needs a new human target for his act. Would Adèle be interested? Adèle’s immediate answer is to jump into the water, but after Gabor fishes her out and gets her to a hospital, she has a change of heart and the pair are soon on their way to Monaco, where Gabor gets a spot at a circus. Adèle and Gabor make a great team; he’s good with knives, she’s young and beautiful, and suddenly Adèle’s luck starts to change. She visits a casino one night and comes home with a fortune, and even when Gabor throws blindfolded, she walks away without so much as a scratch. However, an obvious chemistry is brewing between the two, which leads to a dilemma: Gabor has a strict policy of never getting romantically involved with his partners. Will he make an exception, or is Adèle’s new run of luck coming to an end? Continue reading