Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics What's this?

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6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 5 Ratings

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  • Summary: At the dawn of the twentieth century, in a brothel in Paris, a prostitute's face is scarred and becomes a tragic smile. Life at the brothel is isolated from the outside world and it revolves around the "laughing lady". (Haute et Court Films)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. Reviewed by: Phil Coldiron
    Nov 22, 2011
    100
    A brief history of time and space, according to Bertrand Bonello.
  2. Reviewed by: Scott Tobias
    Nov 22, 2011
    91
    Without soft-pedaling it in the least, Bonello nonetheless mourns the passing of a time where prostitutes didn't control their destinies, but at least had each other.
  3. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Feb 8, 2012
    88
    No one, male or female, has any fun, but the men behave as if they do. They are all half-stupefied by the languor in which they drown.
  4. Reviewed by: J. Hoberman
    Nov 22, 2011
    80
    The filmmaker gives full vent to his romanticism by staging an End of the Epoch party, with tearful sex workers dancing to "Nights in White Satin," then steps on the mood with yet another farewell fĂȘte, commemorating Bastille Day. The prisoners are free - to walk the streets. Ironic, no?
  5. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Mar 29, 2012
    75
    It's a strange film, very original and very good. Just by virtue of the subject matter, it can't help but be erotic, and yet eroticism is not the movie's purpose.
  6. Reviewed by: V.A. Musetto
    Dec 1, 2011
    63
    Despite copious full-frontal female nudity, House of Pleasures isn't mere sexploitation. Rather, it's a gorgeously filmed portrait of a bygone era, with painstaking attention to period detail. On the downside, the movie is overlong.
  7. Reviewed by: David Fear
    Nov 22, 2011
    60
    The result is erratic, occasionally WTF hilarious (three words: revenge by panther!), and in its transgressive tracks-of-my-tears climax, capable of finding pleasure in being bat-shit crazy.

See all 9 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of
  2. Mixed: 0 out of
  3. Negative: 0 out of

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