After splitting the critics, Breillat’s exploration of female sexuality and desire continues to spark controversy and debate, including recurring attempts to draw dividing lines between ‘art’ and ‘pornography’ (an echo of the earlier AI NO CORRIDA). With a cool eye (and design), the film follows Marie’s attempts to find elsewhere the fulfilment denied her by her narcissistic boyfriend Paul. This leads first to a relationship with the voracious Paolo (Italian porn star Siffredi) then to a discomforting arrangement with an older headmaster. Graphic in its depiction of sexuality, the film was passed uncut by the BBFC, largely owing to the gender of its director.
Directed by Catherine Breillat