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Mata Hari, Agent H21 (1964) Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Louis Trintignant
Mata Hari, Agent H21 (1964) Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Louis Trintignant


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Product Code: MH21

This is a region-free DVD-R without case or artwork.

In French with English subtitles. Widescreen.

The script was co-written by François Truffaut and Jean-Louis Richard.

The travails of World War I don't prevent the Alcazar Music Hall from being sold out for the performance given by the star of the show, a beautiful dancer of Javanese origin named Mata-Hari (Jeanne Moreau). In a crowd consisting of civilians and soldiers, some men are sketching the dancer in her exotic outfit. Another man is busy with a pen and paper, but he isn't drawing - he's writing down a series of numbers, numbers which seem to tally with the movements of Mata-Hari's fingers while she dances. When she returns to her dressing room, Mata-Hari finds a huge bouquet of flowers from an unknown admirer. On the seemingly blank visiting card she uncovers a message inviting her to a secret rendezvous in a Parisian street. Here she meets Ludovic, the man who received her coded message at the theater. He instructs her to attend a society party that same evening, where she will meet a certain Captain François Lasalle (Jean-Louis Trintignant). The latter will be carrying an attaché case containing secret documents. Mata-Hari, otherwise known as agent H21, is a German spy, and her next assignment is to seduce Lasalle and lure him back to her apartment so that the vital documents can be stolen. It will be a night that will decide Mata-Hari's future...

Moreau was famously Truffaut's muse at the time and Richard was the father of her son. It should be noted that Moreau's performance has nothing in common with the flamboyant melodrama imagined for Greta Garbo in the 1930s. Moreau's interpretation of Mata Hari shows a woman with many faces - fragile and dangerous, pure and diabolical, loving and cold-hearted. This tender and melancholic work follows a human legend who was a victim of circumstances and who, without her knowing it, became a myth.

Average Rating: 5 of 5 Total Reviews: 1 Write a review »

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Compulsively watchable April 8, 2017
Reviewer: Patrick Hunter from Panorama City, CA United States  
A nicely anamorphic copy, it's a film that's unabashedly romantic (and romanticized), with the two stars in top form.  Truffaut wrote the script, and at times, his fans will notice his touches; it's a pity he didn't also direct, but apparently Moreau preferred that her husband helm it. Even though you probably know how the story ends, it's nonetheless compelling to watch.

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