The story starts in the 1930's at one of the largest rubber-tree plantations in Indochine (Vietnam). This plantation is owned by the French colonist Eliane, a proud woman who lives with her father and her native adoptive daughter Camille. She doesn't have a husband or a man in her life (apart from her father), but gets to know the young officer Jean-Baptiste when both want to buy the same painting at an auction. They have a short affair, but than she refuses to see him again. In the meantime it's Camille who has fallen in love with Jean-Baptiste and Eliane knows it. She makes sure he's send to one of the most desolate outposts on some remote island, making sure that the two will never see each other again. Camille has no choice, but to marry the man she was promised to, but in the meantime she starts a search to find the man she really loves.
A beautiful film about the end of France's stay in what was then French Indochina. Catherine Deneuve plays Eliane, an unmarried woman who is bringing up a Vietnamese girl, Camille (played by Linh Dan Pham) as her own child. She and Camille fall in love with Jean-Baptiste (Vincent Perez) a French soldier. Unfortunately the melodrama of the story was over the top for me and I didn't believe in any of the characters or how they behaved, the beauty of the film wasn't enough to carry it for me.
Catherine Deneuve is strong here in this elegant, large-scale film. Good score too.
From France, beautifully photographed, visually stunning, tale of love and romance set against a backdrop of political turmoil and uprisings in 1930's French colonial Indochina.
Anyone who enjoyed The Painted Veil should enjoy this.