DVD review: Thérèse Desqueyroux

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The Independent Culture

Audrey Tautou stars as the title character in Claude Miller's adaptation of François Mauriac's novel of bourgeois entrapment. In 1920s Bordeaux, Thérèse is a free-spirited young woman who knows she must marry stolid Bernard (Gilles Lellouche) and thus unite their land-owning families.

Thérèse begins to realise the prison of convention she has made for herself. Her means of escape will prove more drastic than anyone can imagine. Miller nicely outlines the oppressive atmosphere surrounding the Bordeaux gentry, but the pace is too languid and its characters too opaque.