Maneges (1950)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Melodrama, Psychological Drama  |   Run Time - 91 min.  |   Countries - France  |  
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Yves Allegret's Maneges was released in English-speaking countries as The Riding School, The Cheat and Riding for a Fall. Allegret and his screenwriter Jacques Sigurd use their melodramatic plotline to skewer several varieties of hypocrisy. Simone Signoret plays a thoroughly mercenary young woman who offers her body to a wealthy riding-school owner (Bernard Blier). Once she's trapped the poor man into marriage, she strips him of his wealth and property, all the while consorting with lovers from her own class. The film's Ethan Frome-like climax is in keeping with the cynical, semi-satiric tone of the rest of the picture. It is difficult to "feel" for any of the characters in Maneges, since Allegret holds all of them in undisguised contempt.

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Keywords

con/scam, hypocrisy, love, marriage, marriage-trap, mercenary, romance, seduction