The Flower of Evil (2003) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Flower of Evil (2003)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Flower of Evil Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

Co-written by Caroline Eliacheff, Claude Chabrol's La Fleur Du Mal (The Flower of Evil) concerns three generations of the bourgeois Charpin-Vasseur family. The story opens in the present day with a murder occurring during a local election and son Francois (Benoit Magimel) returning home to Bordeaux after four years in the U.S. His father Gerard (Bernard Le Coq) is a suave and successful pharmaceutical manufacturer, while his stepmother Anne (Nathalie Baye) is in the process of running for local office. Francois has long harbored a strong interest in Anne's daughter, psychology student Michele (Melanie Doutey), and - despite the fact that they are related in various ways - they begin a torrid affair. Then, right before election night, a letter appears, revealing negative information about the family's past concerning the elderly Aunt Line's (Suzanne Flon) connection to a crime dating back to WWII. La Fleur Du Mal was nominated for the Golden Bear at the 2003 Berlin International Film Festival.more
Rating: R (for brief language)
Genre: Drama, Art House & International, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By: Caroline Eliacheff, Louise L. Lambrichs, Claude Chabrol
In Theaters:
On DVD: Apr 20, 2004
Palm Pictures - Official Site

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Benoît Magimel
as Francois Vasseur
Nathalie Baye
as Anne Charpin-Vasseur
Mélanie Doutey
as Michele Charpin-Vass...
Suzanne Flon
as Aunt Line
Bernard Le Coq
as Gerard Vasseur
Thomas Chabrol
as Matthieu Charpin-Vas...
Henri Attal
as Fanny Father-in-law
Kevin Ahyi
as First Kid
Jerome Bertin
as Volunteer
Yvon Crenn
as Yves Pouet
Jean-Marc Druet
as Lab assistant
Edmond Kastelnik
as First election offic...
Marius de Laage
as Second kid
Isabelle Mamere
as Journalist
Jean-Pierre Marin
as Second election offi...
Dominque Pivain
as Dominique
Lea Pellepaut
as Drugstore saleswoman
Valerie Rojan
as Gerard's secretary
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News & Interviews for The Flower of Evil

Critic Reviews for The Flower of Evil

All Critics (65) | Top Critics (26)

The strength of this movie is how it starts as a standard whodunit only to become something else: a cunning Chabrol study of incest and old money peppered with a wicked sense of humor.

Full Review… | April 9, 2004
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

Leave reason behind, back in steerage class, and simply breathe in the foibles of the (upper) crust on this crème brûlée.

Full Review… | January 9, 2004
Denver Post
Top Critic

Told without drama, as if this were just an ordinary family, it is the subtleties of the details that win you over.

Full Review… | November 28, 2003
Miami Herald
Top Critic

Each of the characters in the film is so real, so fully drawn, that you feel you know him or her as a person, not as fiction.

November 28, 2003
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

A minor work from a major talent.

Full Review… | November 20, 2003
Minneapolis Star Tribune
Top Critic

Chabrol's examination of intergenerational guilt takes awhile to arrive at the station, but the characters and dialogue -- screenplay by Caroline Eliacheff -- are sophisticated and properly witty.

Full Review… | November 14, 2003
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Flower of Evil


A decent if not completely unremarkable French thriller. It isn't that there's anything wrong with The Flower of Evil, per se, but I feel like I've just spent 100 minutes watching absolutely nothing new. The themes are interesting if not completely broad, the characters are nothing special, and the humor seems oddly thin.

It's a very pretty, expertly acted waste of time.

Drew Smith

Super Reviewer

A rather competent drama, but not spectacular in any way beside the absolute cuteness of Melanie Doutey, who has the sweetest and most loveable smile I ever seen on screen. The incest angle in my opinion is rather weak and sensationalized, as are the murders past and present. This story is more like a mild, luke warm cup of coffee. I just prefer mine to be stronger and hot. Not a bad watch though

alan jay

Super Reviewer

I've heard great things about Claude Chabrol for years. Is this not a good movie to base an opinion from? Because it's ponderous to the point of glacial, deeply uninteresting, and has only a few well-acted roles to redeem it.

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