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George De La Pena,
On February 2nd 1933, in the town of Le Mans, in the West of France, two sisters, Christine Papin, 27, and her younger sister Léa Papin, 21, brutally killed their employer Mrs. Ancelin and her daughter Geneviève. Why did they commit this horrifying murder? As a result of an unhappy childhood? Because they could no longer stand being commanded and exploited by arrogant bourgeois employers? Because their incestuous relationship had been exposed? The film tries to answer these questions and make us understand why and how the two sisters turned from meek sheep to bloody monsters.Written by
This is the story of the Papin sisters - whose tale inspired a play by Jean Genet and several earlier movies. This is probably the most historical of any of the previous attempts at the telling. Christine and Lea are sisters from a working class broken family in France, a family that has always been `in service.' When Christine expresses a desire to go into a convent like her older sister, the mother screams, `You'll slave for others the way I have.' As Christine tries to protect her younger sister from the world, her blank face in the presence of her rich employees does little to hide her growing bitterness and rage. Sylvie Testud as Christine gives one of the best performances to be seen in recent years. This is a drama of individuals, and - a rarity in these times - a clearly political drama about class conflict. See it despite the tabloid title given to its U.S. release.
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