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1,751 Ratings

House of Tolerance

L'Apollonide: Souvenirs de la maison close

Directed by Bertrand Bonello
France, 2011


The dawn of the XXth century: L’Apollonide, a house of tolerance, is living its last days. In this closed world, where some men fall in love and others become viciously harmful, the girls share their secrets, their fears, their joys and their pains.

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House of Tolerance Directed by Bertrand Bonello
The director extends his greatest compassion to the employees—prisoners, really—of the Apollonide, the opulent Belle Epoque Parisian bordello of House of Pleasures (2011). Featuring some of France’s greatest millennial actresses (Adèle Haenel, Céline Sallette) among its doxy ensemble, the film sates the senses with its luxe decor and impeccably arranged, languid bodies. Although the mise-en-scène may be sumptuous, Bonello has no interest in glorifying the profession.
April 28, 2015
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Bertrand Bonello’s 2011 masterpiece House of Pleasures was itself a minor-scale tremor sent echoing across the world film circuit, a vivid, audacious vision of the incremental degradation of the female spirit and a work, in its own way, as unsettling as anything our modern cataclysmic cinema has given us.
April 23, 2013
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It left me a bit cold and appreciative on only an intellectual level. And then, in the film’s final moments, modern-day coda, a brief detail that turns the film into a much larger story about modernity, capitalism, exchange, workers, and the lives of women eaten up by a machine that turns humans into exchanged commodities but legislates against their solidarity and defense. Devastated, overwhelmed, unable to stifle enormous tears, I wept, uncontrollably, long through the credits.
January 07, 2013
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