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Queen To Play (2009)

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Learn more about Queen To Play:

Format: DVD
Sku: 221402620
UPC: 795975113632
UPC 14: 00795975113632
Category Keywords: Psychodrama
Rating: NR
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Oscar-winner kevin kline (a fish called wanda) and the luminous sandrine bonnaire (la ceremonie) square off in this stylish and sophisticated dramedy of newfound passions and mid-life triumphs, set on the postcard-perfect isle of corsica.
Editor's Note
A middle-aged maid with few prospects before her finds a new lease on life via the game of chess, in this unusual tale that marked the first directorial go-round of acclaimed scriptwriter Caroline Bottaro (LES AVEUX DE L'INNOCENT). French screen siren Sandrine Bonnaire (À NOS AMOURS) stars as Hélène, a Frenchwoman employed as a housekeeper in a posh Corsican hotel. Though devoted and diligent as a wife and mother, she lacks any real passion in her life. That changes in a single, defining instant when Helene espies a mysterious couple (the female played by Jennifer Beals) exchanging erotic glances and seductive gestures over a chessboard, on a nearby balcony. Feeling sexual arousal, Hélène misguidedly tries to parlay this into her own personal life by giving her boatworker husband an electronic chessboard, but the connection between this and a need for greater intimacy eludes him. Hélène's curiosity about chess nonetheless endures, and when she fails to teach herself to play sans assistance, she turns to an eccentric, reclusive American whose house she cleans, Dr. Kroger (Kevin Kline) and asks him to mentor her in the game. In time, her expertise outstrips Kroger's and she begins to live and breathe chess, but this very passion also threatens to alienate the woman's family, who perceive a form of infidelity in this new obsession.


Video Features DVD, French, English, Subtitled, Aspect Ratio 1.85:1

Technical Info

Release Information
Video Mfg Name Studio: Zeitgeist Films
Video Release Date Release Date: 8/16/2011
Video Play Time Running Time: 97 minutes
Video Release Year Original Release Date: 2009
Video UPC UPC: 00795975113632
Video Number of Discs Number of Discs: 1

Audio & Video
Video Audio Spec Available Audio Tracks:
Video Color Spec Video: (unknown/unconverted)
Entertainment Reviews
Expert Review Queen to Play - DVD Review
By: Dusty Somers Reviews
Published on: 8/15/2011 2:10 PM
Despite its familiarity, Caroline Bottaro’s Queen to Play manages to be a tender and involving tale of self-discovery. All the expected beats are hit on the way there, but solid performances and a thoughtful approach to the material make for an enjoyable, if not groundbreaking, film. Sandrine Bonnaire stars as Hélène, a maid on the Isle of Corsica. One day, when cleaning a room at the hotel where she works, she sees a couple (Jennifer Beals, Dominic Gould) playing chess on the balcony, and she’s instantly the full review

Cast & Crew

Video Cast Info Jennifer Beals
Video Cast Info Sandrine Bonnaire
Video Cast Info Francis Renaud
Video Cast Info Kevin Kline
Video Cast Info Valerie Lagrange
Video Cast Info Elisabeth Vitali - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Daniel Martin - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Laurence Colussi - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Alice Pol - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Didier Ferrari - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Alexandra Gentil - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Valerie Trejean - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Dominic Gould - Co-Star
Video Cast Info Jean-Claude Larrieu - Director of Photography
Video Cast Info Nicola Piovani - Composer
Video Cast Info Caroline Bottaro - Screenwriter
Video Cast Info Emmanuel Croset - Sound
Video Cast Info Selim Azzazi - Sound
Video Cast Info Erwan Kerzanet - Sound
Video Cast Info Bertina Henrichs - Source Writer
Video Cast Info Caroline Maly - Screenwriter
Video Cast Info Caroline Bottaro - Director

Professional Reviews

Los Angeles Times
"An actress of exceptional presence with a magical smile and the ability to look both beautiful and ordinary, Bonnaire runs through a wide range of emotions and makes us believe them all." 04/01/2011

Entertainment Weekly
"Just as the queen is the most powerful piece on the chessboard, the compelling French actress Sandrine Bonnaire holds together this gentle tale of chess and midlife emotions..." -- Grade: B 04/15/2011

New York Times
"Caroline Bottaro's tangy comic bonbon, QUEEN TO PLAY plucks the game of chess out of the metaphorical realm of spy thrillers and reimagines it as a fable about relationships and upward mobility.... 04/01/2011

Chicago Sun-Times
3.5 stars out of 4 -- "The film has some sly fun with the way chess consumes Helene's mind..." 05/04/2011

Washington Post
3 stars out of 4-- "[A] subtle, absorbing film....A film whose pleasures reside in quiet moments, understated performances and the reading of subtitles." 05/13/2011

Product Attributes

Product attributeVideo Format:   DVD
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