Rent Diary of a Chambermaid (1964)

3.8 of 5 from 83 ratings
1h 34min
Rent Diary of a Chambermaid (aka Le journal d'une femme de chambre) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
  • General info
  • Available formats
Synopsis:
Written by Bunuel and his regular writing partner Jean-Claude Carriere, the film charts the ambitions of Celestine (Jeanne Moreau), a woman who comes to work in the Normandy estate occupied by Monsieur Rabour (Jean Ozenne), his daughter (Francoise Lugagne), and the daughter's husband, the right wing Monsieur Montiel (Michel Piccoli). Celestine quickly learns that M. Rabour is a more or less harmless boot fetishist, his daughter a frigid woman more concerned with the family furnishings than in returning the affections of her husband, who, in turn, can't keep his hands off the servants.
Celestine picks her way through this minefield carefully, spurning the advances of all of the men until it's convenient for her.
Actors:
, , , , , , , , , Dominique Sauvage, , , , , , , , , ,
Directors:
Producers:
Michel Safra, Serge Silberman
Writers:
Octave Mirbeau, Luis Buñuel, Jean-Claude Carrière
Aka:
Le journal d'une femme de chambre
Studio:
Optimum
Genres:
Classics, Drama
Countries:
France, Classics, Drama
BBFC:
Release Date:
22/01/2007
Run Time:
94 minutes
Languages:
French
Subtitles:
English
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1
Colour:
B & W
Bonus:
  • 'An Angel in the Marshes' - 26 Minute Documentary
  • Theatrical Trailer
BBFC:
Release Date:
23/10/2017
Run Time:
97 minutes
Languages:
French
Subtitles:
English
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen 2.35:1
Colour:
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
B

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Reviews (1) of Diary of a Chambermaid

Serving Up A Bit Of A Disappointment. - Diary of a Chambermaid review by NC

Spoiler Alert
21/01/2019

All of Bunuel's accustomed betes-noires: the bourgeoisie, fascism, religion, are given the pasting you might expect, but 'Diary Of A Chambermaid' is one of his films where virtually everyone, and every institution, is battered. Only Marianne, a middle-aged skivvy, verbally abused by a member of the staff at the big house, and (so we are led to believe) sexually abused by the master of the house, is someone we can sympathise with.

A new chambermaid arrives, elegant and sophisticated, a bird of a different feather to the rest of the servants. She is witness to the vile racism of groom/gardener Joseph, plotting with the sexton to rid France of 'wops and kikes'. She puts up with the shoe fetish of the old man in the house, walking around the room for him in 'nice little booties'. She seems to be able to listen in on private conversations; not long after the master tells his wife he won't go near the new girl because she's from Paris, and carries Heaven knows what disease, she evades his marauding hands by informing him she has the pox.

When a child is raped and murdered in the woods nearby, she is pretty clear in her mind about who has done it, and stages a plan to trap him. Her excessive,unnecessary commitment to the strategy doesn't ring true in the slightest, and totally spoils the film.

Michel Piccoli, Muni, and Georges Geret are very fine, but there is one overwhelming reason to watch 'Diary Of A Chambermaid': Jeanne Moreau. Even playing a cool, understated character, displaying little emotion, but with a quiet ambition, she exudes light and fire. One of the greatest ever screen presences once again shows how the best make it look easy.

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