Maelström (2000) from Tuna

Maelström (2000) is a French Canadian film suggested by a reader.

I finally located it in Canada, and one huge plus is lots of nudity, including full frontal from Marie-Josée Croze. It is in French with English sub-titles. It is a very strange, artsy film. The story is narrated by a fish that is being butchered, and is about a young woman (Croze) who starts off by having a really bad day. She has an abortion, her brother ousts her from the three boutiques she runs, and she hits a fish carver with her car. The carver goes, not to the hospital, but to his apartment, where he slowly dies of his injuries.

Distraught over what she has done, Croze drives her car into the river, but survives. She ends up living happily ever after with the son of the man she killed. There is a lot of unusual photography, and some very strange plot elements. At one point, the owner of a fish market tells the future by reading fish guts. 


see the main commentary

DVD available in Canada.

It won several international awards. It is possible I would have taken more from the film if my French was better, but I found myself wondering what it was about more than once. 

The Critics Vote

  • Apollo 80/100

The People Vote ...

  • With their votes ... IMDB summary: IMDb voters score it a classic-level 7.5, Apollo users an equally impressive 78/100. 
  • with their dollars ... It saw a very limited US release, with
    a gross of $254,380. 
IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a C.

Return to the Movie House home page