A Woman’s Life
Adapted from the novel ‘Une vie’ by Guy de Maupassant, ‘A Woman’s Life’ is a tale of tormented love embedded in the restrictive social and moral codes of marriage and family in 19th century Normandy. Upon finishing her schooling in a convent, young aristocrat Jeanne (Judith Chemla) marries local Viscount Julien de Lamare (Swann Arlaud), who soon reveals himself to be a miserly and unfaithful husband. As she navigates his chronic infidelity, pressure from her family and community, and the alternating joys and burdens of motherhood, Jeanne’s rosy illusions about her privileged world are slowly stripped away. French filmmaker Stéphane Brizé shoots this follow-up to his Cannes and César Award winner ‘The Measure of a Man’ in constricted 4:3 Academy ratio, creating a tightly composed work that perfectly translates de Maupassant’s portrayal of life’s indifferences.