House of Pleasures

25subhouse-thumbstandard Director Bertrand Bonello makes life in an upscale Parisian bordello at the beginning of the 20th century the focus of this drama, which revolves around the working girls who ply their trade there, including one who's been disfigured by a client.
HD Available
Netflix Rating: 2.8
NYT Review
Madeline (Alice Barnole), the tragic figure at the heart of Bertrand Bonello’s somber, hypnotic film “House of Pleasures," is a prostitute known as “the woman who laughs" at L’Apollonide, an elegant Parisian brothel at the end of the 19th century. Read the review
Rotten Tomatoes: Fresh 80%
Critics' score: 80   Audience score: 64   Rotten Tomatoes page
Top Rotten Tomatoes Critics

It's about forcing us to think about people we never would otherwise and seeing their struggles and humanity. full review

Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle

What gives the film its haunting pull, as well as its feminist undercurrent, is the filmmaker's palpable compassion for these women. full review

Jon Frosch, The Atlantic

No one, male or female, has any fun, but the men behave as if they do. They are all half-stupefied by the languor in which they drown. full review

Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

It emphasizes setting over character and plot; and it casts a mood that's both eerie and entrancing. full review

Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader

"Pleasures" becomes as enveloping - and sometimes as awkward - as one of the L'Apollonide ladies' heaving corsets. full review

Gary Goldstein, Los Angeles Times

The heavy candlelit chiaroscuro paints the women as mobile Renoirs, Degases and Manets. full review

Stephen Holden, New York Times

It's a gorgeously filmed portrait of a bygone era, with painstaking attention to period detail. full review

V.A. Musetto, New York Post

Among other things, a sharp corrective to such effervescent red-light classics as Max Ophuls's "Le Plaisir." full review

Richard Brody, New Yorker

Glamorously louche. full review

J. Hoberman, Village Voice
Similars Available on Instant
  • Release Year: 2011
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Runtime: 122 min
  • Available From: Aug 23, 2012
  • Queued by: 704 people
Directed By
Bertrand Bonello
Hafsia Herzi, Céline Sallette, Jasmine Trinca, Adele Haenel, Alice Barnole, Iliana Zabeth, Noemie Lvovsky, Xavier Beauvois, Louis-Do de Lencquesaing, Jacques Nolot, Laurent Lacotte

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