When her husband is taken hostage by his striking employees, a trophy wife (Deneuve) takes the reins of the family business and proves to be a remarkably effective leader. Business and personal complications arrive in the form of her ex-lover (Depardieu), a former union leader.
Suzanne Pujol is a decorative wife: she runs a household, while her imperious and philandering husband runs the family umbrella factory with 300 employees. While he recuperates from a heart attack during a labor dispute, she brings her two adult children into the factory. Through shrewd use of both her values and an old connection to Babin, the leftist mayor and MP, she gets things moving again. Her husband's return, her daughter's shaky marriage, and the torch Babin carries for her become formidable obstacles.
- synopsis In a French bourgeois province in 1977, Suzanne is the submissive wife of rich industrialist Robert Pujol, who runs his umbrella factory with an iron hand and turns out to be just as nasty and tyrannical with his workers as he is with his mistress, children and trophy wife. After the workers go on strike and hold Robert captive, Suzanne ends up managing the factory, instead of her husband, who is disowned by the staff. Distressed and in poor health, Robert goes away for a while and, to the surprise of most, Suzanne proves to be an assertive woman of action. With the help of the communist deputy, her former lover Maurice Babin, she puts an end to the strike, gets the factory running again and improves the employees working conditions. But when Robert returns from his trip in good health, the situation gets complicated. From Pierre Barillet and Jean-Pierre Grédys eponymous play.