The Earrings of Madame de…

  |  Book Tickets: 23/05/2016
  |  79 min
Rated TBC by the BBFC


At its heart a heartless froth of benign deceit amid the Continental demi-monde, Ophuls’ penultimate film (post-LA RONDE and pre-LOLA MONTES) is characteristic of the German director’s elaborate camerawork and visual elegance. To clear her debts, the titular Madame (Darrieux) sells some earrings to the jeweller from whom her husband (Boyer) originally acquired them. The jeweller discreetly informs the husband, who then buys them for his mistress, who’s just leaving for Constantinople, where she is obliged to sell them to a Baron (De Sica), who in turn presents them to Madame, who by then has become his lover… Although thematically the tale is the stuff of farce, the wit here is subtler, and the morality more complex and mannered. As a period piece by a master auteur, it’s highly rewarding viewing.