Il piacere (Le plaisir)

Critic Bruno Fornara lays down the law in Pleasure (Le Plaisir), Max Ophüls’s masterpiece, pausing at the second episode, The Tellier Home (La Maison Tellier).

For her niece’s First Communion, Mrs. Tellier, who manages a brothel in a small city on the Manica, brings all of her employees with her on a country vacation to a small village in Normandy. Nature’s splendor, the splendid ‘young ladies’, everyone’s deep feelings. Pleasure, Max Ophüls’s second French film after his return from Hollywood (1946-1949), is made up of three stories by Guy de Maupassant.

Pleasure is contrasted with old age (The Mask), purity (The Tellier Home), marriage (The Model).

Le plaisir
by Max Ophüls
France, 1951

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