A painterly image of a woman in a 19th century tunic sitting with a script on her lapalr

A Woman’s Revenge
(A Vingança de Uma Mulher)

Directed by Rita Azevedo Gomes.
With Rita Durão, Fernando Rodrigues, Hugo Tourita.
Portugal, 2012, DCP, color, 100 min.
Portuguese with English subtitles.
DCP source: Basilisco Filmes

Azevedo Gomes captured the decadent demimonde of 19th century Europe in her unexpected breakthrough film, a carefully measured adaptation of Jules Barbey d’Aurevilly’s tale of a world-weary, cynical lothario who glides into a dalliance with a sex worker who, in turn, radically turns the tables through a riveting and excoriating testimonial. Rita Durão delivers a smoldering performance of a woman who chooses her own incendiary destiny, burning every bridge with self-immolatory flames. Rare for a contemporary period film is the careful restraint that guides A Woman’s Revenge and allows each rustle of silk and ritualized gesture to tremble with full emotive force.

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Part of film series

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Música de Câmara. The Cinema of Rita Azevedo Gomes

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Jean-Pierre Bekolo, 2024 McMillan-Stewart Fellow

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