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Pretty Baby [DVD]

4.1 out of 5 stars 37 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Brooke Shields, Keith Carradine, Susan Sarandon, Frances Faye, Antonio Fargas
  • Directors: Louis Malle
  • Producers: Louis Malle
  • Format: PAL
  • Subtitles: Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Spanish, Swedish
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: Paramount Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 19 Feb. 2007
  • Run Time: 106 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000KQGX46
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,610 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

A photographer in turn-of-the-century New Orleans takes pictures of prostitutes, and eventually falls for one hooker's prepubescent daughter. A memorable film debut for Shields at 12.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By schumann_bg TOP 50 REVIEWER on 12 May 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
As with all Louis Malle's films, subtlety is the keynote to this portrayal of a New Orleans brothel in the early years of the 20th century, and of the lives of one prostitute and her 12-year-old daughter in particular. The performances by Susan Sarandon and Brooke Shields are very natural and hugely impressive, as is the tenor of Malle's direction, which fills in the sense of place with great immediacy. You really feel you are there in this large house for real, the authenticity of it is there in front of you. It is very far from most period recreations in films, and somehow the time difference melts away, even though we can see that the mores were different at that time. The ensemble scenes in the brothel are seamlessly handled, and many of the stills could have inspired a painting by Toulouse-Lautrec or Sickert. Child prostitution seems not to have been so shocking then as it is now, but it is useful to show the shift in attitudes to this as to many other things, in order to give more context to our own time. Malle does this in other films as well, always suggesting how the underlying dynamics in human interaction are the same even if they are dressed up differently. The photographer (Keith Carradine) who falls in love with the young girl is not presented in a moralising way, rather it is left for us to feel the awkwardness of his infatuation, or to feel whatever we feel. In fact it is quite hard not to feel sorry for him, and to see in him a certain purity, really, which had made him so reserved for much of the film.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Produced and directed by Louis Malle in the late seventies, Pretty Baby portrays the taboo subject of child prostitution in the early twentieth century. The film became very controversial for obvious reasons. It shows Brooke Shields (who plays Violet) at the age of twelfth often completely naked and in a sexual role unsuitable for a minor. The film is based mainly in a house set in the red light district of New Orleans and follows the character of E.J Bellocq (Keith Carradine) a photographer who becomes involved with Violet. There are some powerful and 'disturbing' scenes throughout the film. One that comes to mind is when they start to auction her to a room of gentleman selling her as a virgin and refering to her as "The finest delicacy New Orleans has to offer" and selling her like a piece of meat to the highest bidder. However if you can see past certain things then you will see that Pretty Baby is a film of humanity and beauty. Is an original one of a kind film that shows how life was and how life changed. The acting throughout the film and from everyone is just amazing. However I feel as a serious film fan that I should point out that the British release of the DVD has been cut. Its running time is only 105 minutes while the running time of the American release is 109 minutes which is slightly longer (you can check by searching for Pretty Baby region 1 on Amazon and scrolling down to its running time.) I couldn't tell you what exactly has been cut out and why. Also I would have liked to have seen some special features on the DVD that are worth watching. Currently there are none. But all things considered I think that Pretty Baby is a film that everyone should see at least once.
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Format: DVD
I like this movie and I have seen this countless of times. 'Pretty Baby' is a testament to the fact that the 70's were vastly more liberated than our times, at least when it comes to sexuality. In here pretty baby is twelve-year-old Violet, played by Brooke Shields. Violet has grown in the environment of a circa World War I whorehouse in New Orleans, where her mother Hattie (Susan Sarandon) practices the oldest of professions. She still acts like a child, one who likes to chase lizards in the underbrush and who throws tantrums when she doesn't get her way. When her mother leaves the brothel to start a respectable life, Violet remains and allows her virginity to be auctioned off to the highest bidder. She finds herself drawn to a photographer, Bellocq, who is taking portraits of Storyville prostitutes. Realizing that she is love, the young Violet declares her intention to marry Bellocq...

Brook performance literally carries this movie. Yes, the movie is quite explicit about the business of prostitution during that time, but it is never exploited and gives one the sense of how it really was, and what might happen to children born into prostitution. Malle's dispassionate take on all of this outraged viewers a quarter-century ago, but it all seems rather tame today. Perhaps too tame.........

Malle's restraint is so great at times that one wishes he'd pushed the envelope even more. But he got an amazing performance out of Shields, one that she never topped in her career as an actress -- Violet is a mesmerizing combination of innocent child and sly young woman, and that we never see her as a victim is to both her credit and Malle's.
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