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Loulou [1980] [DVD]

Gerard Depardieu , Isabelle Huppert , Maurice Pialat    Suitable for 18 years and over   DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: £5.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Loulou [1980] [DVD] + Sous Le Soleil De Satan (AKA Under Satan's Sun, AKA Under the Sun of Satan) [Masters of Cinema] [DVD] [1987] + Police [Masters of Cinema] [DVD] [1985]
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Product details

  • Actors: Gerard Depardieu, Isabelle Huppert, Guy Marchand
  • Directors: Maurice Pialat
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Artificial Eye
  • DVD Release Date: 26 Jun 2006
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000FPV8D8
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 28,298 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Two of French cinema's biggest stars illuminate the screen in this sexually charged story of an affair between a couple of young Parisians whose backgrounds are worlds apart. Gérard Depardieu plays Loulou, a layabout and petty thief who meets middle-class Nelly (Isabelle Huppert) in a nightclub. Nelly is bored by her job in advertising and by the possessiveness and violent tempers of her boss and lover André (Guy Marchand). Much to the disbelief of André, Nelly decides to leave him and move in with Loulou. Featuring brilliant performances from its cast, Maurice Pialat s atmospheric portrait of low-life Paris won him international recognition and acclaim.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars interesting, but fails at some level 9 Jun 2014
By schumann_bg TOP 100 REVIEWER
Loulou is an important film, no doubt, but I confess to having difficulties with it. Maurice Pialat has been described as a French Cassavetes, but it seems to me that the American director makes us care for his characters much more. In Loulou the three main characters are all quite unsympathetic, if realistic, leading me to question what it is that makes a film work ... For instance, in this case I would certainly say that it spoils the film because we are left indifferent by the selfish behaviour of the trio, where in a fantasy film like Monsieur Hire, made a decade later, it matters less, but the fantasy is such that the film says nothing about life, which is also unsatisfying.

For me, kitchen sink drama doesn't work if the characters' being ordinary means we don't like them, which is what often happens. Here Nelly leaves her middle-class lover and employer to be with a sexy layabout who is not faithful; she strings the first one along in a completely unacceptable way, having sex with him again behind the other's back, then carelessly gets pregnant, but in the end has an abortion without her boyfriend's agreement because he doesn't seem serious about getting a job. How can one regard such behaviour, really? The first boyfriend would have been all right but for me shot himself in the foot when he made homophobic remarks about "restaurants for poofs" early in the film. That was him written off, even though later he was the most sympathetic of the three, and you do feel some sympathy for him in his efforts to win her back. You do need some aesthetic pleasure in a film that deals in banal subject matter, I think, as we are all aware of the things Pialat is showing. They are simply not interesting enough in themselves unless the characters have some particular quality.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Depardieu And Huppert ‘United’ 1 Aug 2014
By Keith M TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Sporadic French film-maker Maurice Pialat’s studied, observational 1980 drama of ‘mismatched’ lovers Gerard Depardieu’s earthy, working-class Loulou and Isabelle Huppert’s more ‘refined’ Nelly is particularly notable for me as a big fan of this pair of French acting 'royalty’ (I particularly remember a trip to Paris at the time of the film’s release when the film’s poster – showing the pair staring reflectively into the distance – was plastered on what seemed like every Parisian billboard) and for being their first (and only?) 'major’ coming together on the big screen (following Huppert’s minor part in Bertrand Blier’s 1974 film Les Valseuses, in which Depardieu starred). As was Pialat’s wont, Loulou is (for the most part) a typically slow-moving, naturalistic, intimate and sometimes elliptical take on the social pressures and barriers existing within French (well, Parisian at least) society and its meandering, mercurial narrative might be regarded as typical of much French cinema of the period.

It’s quite difficult to see much beyond the film’s two stars (although Guy Marchand does deliver a brilliant turn as Nelly’s cuckolded husband, the confused and insecure, André) as, unsurprisingly, they monopolise screen-time. Depardieu is very much in post-Les Valseuses mode here (albeit now pushing 32-years old) – the hulking 'bit of rough’ (though with a little more emotional complexity than in the earlier film), a tattooed, Gitanes-smoking, ex-con, whose has (alternately) women falling at his feet and jealous boyfriends confronting (and assaulting) him. Pialat doesn’t 'mince words’ either and within 10 minutes of the film’s start we’ve witnessed the Depardieu buttocks and he’s collapsed the bed.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Tedious 17 Aug 2014
Shallow, slow and almost devoid of story. Real life, maybe..but at its most tedious.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.8 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nelly 7 Jun 2001
By Peter Shelley - Published on
Director Maurice Pialat's film is more an exercise in star power than any presentation of narrative, with Isabelle Huppert leaving her husband Guy Marchand for the leather-clad ex-con ruffian Loulou played by Depardieu. Even though the tone takes its cue from the character of Loulou as a womanising drifter, the low key seemingly improvised rambling scenes are preferable to the gab-fests of Eric Rohmer, who is responsible for the negative connotations associated with French films by Americans. This film is actually mistitled since although it is Depardieu that is the catalyst for Huppert to change her life, the story is more hers than his. Or perhaps it is that the representation of her crumbling marriage that is more dramatically interesting than Depardieu's "loafing". If Loulou's character is sketched thinly that may to keep him as an enigma, the mysterious bad-boy that women always seem to prefer. At one point Huppert says of Depardieu, "I prefer a loafer who f**ks, to a rich guy who bugs me". And although we can see how limiting Depardieu's world is to Huppert, we also understand her attraction to him, highlighted by a silent image of the couple stumbling down a street in a drunken embrace. Pialat's best moments involve scenes of violence outbursts - a family get together soured by jealousy, the loud music of a disco drowning out shouting, and a brawl between Depardieu and Marchand in a courtyard with a following drink together as evidence of the French form of civilised behaviour. Huppert also has an early scene with Marchand where the camera follows his pursuit and humiliation of her, and here Huppert's anger invalidates the myth of her as a passive performer. The film also shows us footage of her laughing, which is unusual since her situations are usually so glum, and she is funny when she yells in shocked reaction to being hit, in the famous love scene where the bed collapses, and when she falls in the street by accident. Pialat also gives Marchand a laugh by having him resort to playing the saxophone in depression.
15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loulou 13 May 2000
By Dohmen Sigrid - Published on
This movie goes back to the early Eighties and I still remember it, since I went to watch it three times within a few days. It was probably due to the scene where the bed crashes down. It is one of the films of the young Depardieu in couple with Isabelle Huppert and with an excellent Maurice Pialat directing it. In reality nothing really important happens, but the love scenes are nice. Depardieu plays a young guy who is rather happy without being fixed up in regular work and Isabelle Hupper leaves her husband to stay with him. She earns their living and also decides to abort, since Depardieu only wants to work after the birth of the child. This is also the sad fact about the movie that in reality does not have an end. There is also a nice scene with an open air dinner, much fun and lots to eat and to drink.
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars +1/2 ...outlining a rather sad but steamy affair 7 Jan 2004
By DJ Joe Sixpack - Published on
This 1980 French film is a fairly dreary, depressing, anti-romantic character study, featuring Isabelle Huppert as a restless young woman who ditches her boring, tempramental boyfriend for a wild, leather-clad bad boy (played by an incandescent, youthful Gerard Depardieu). The films inches forth through one mildly unsettling scenario to another; the cumulative effect of which is something close to spiritual nausea. It's supposed to be that way, though: this film is very much a precursor to the downcast realism of the 1990s "dogme" scene, skillfully made, but definitely a downer. However, Depardieu is particularly magnetic in this early role... worth it to see him in his prime!
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Poor Nelly 27 Sep 2009
By floridian321 - Published on
That's a better title than the one they went with, which refers to the character played by Depardieu, because the film is about Huppert's character, who is 25 in this film and already an accomplished actress.

This film, like most dramatic films (and even some comedies), is about poor choices and their consequences. Nelly clearly made a bad decision marrying Andre, a boring, jealous, possessive jerk who overreacts and becomes violent when she so much as looks at other men. Andre may or may not love Nelly but he clearly has no clue what she needs or how she wants to be loved.

Small wonder that Nelly is fed up and dumps Andre. But for womanizing bad boy Loulou, just our of prison, with no visible means of support, and still involved in silly heists with his criminal pals? Hmmmm ...

But wait! It gets better ... um ... worse: Loulou gets Nelly pregnant. Apparently, both missed the class in high school where they tell you about safe sex, or just plain don't care. What happens to the pregnancy is predictable after Nelly visits Loulou's family and realizes this "package deal" is not an improvement over life with Andre -- though I would say the film understates the effect of the abortion on Nelly. There is no happy ending; quite the contrary, we are left with the clear impression Nelly's life will be, as Hobbes says, "nasty, brutish, and short." What is a woman to do? Yes, indeed.

A brief word about the subtitles: They are bare bones; not wrong, mind you, just leave out subtleties that would have added context to the story.
5.0 out of 5 stars PIALAT AT HIS BEST 6 Oct 2007
By Daniel S. - Published on
Gérard Depardieu and Isabelle Huppert gained a star status with this film directed by Maurice Pialat in 1980. Depardieu is an animal and Huppert a middle-class woman attracted by his way of living. Essential.
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