Nathalie... is a 2003 French drama film directed by Anne Fontaine, and starring Fanny Ardant, Emmanuelle Béart, and Gérard Depardieu. The screenplay concerns a woman who discovers that her husband is cheating on her.

Nathalie... poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAnne Fontaine
Screenplay byAnne Fontaine
Jacques Fieschi
François-Olivier Rousseau
Based onAn original idea
by Philippe Blasband
Produced byAlain Sarde
StarringFanny Ardant
Gérard Depardieu
Emmanuelle Béart
CinematographyJean-Marc Fabre
Edited byEmmanuelle Castro
Music byMichael Nyman
Distributed byKoch-Lorber Films
Release date
  • 11 September 2003 (2003-09-11) (Toronto)
  • 7 January 2004 (2004-01-07) (France)
  • 20 May 2005 (2005-05-20) (Spain)
Running time
100 minutes
Budget$7.4 million[citation needed]
Box office$8.7 million[1]


Catherine, a gynaecologist in her forties, accidentally learns that her husband Bernard, a businessman, has cheated on her.[2] She hires an upmarket prostitute, who works as a hairdresser, to seduce her husband and tell her the details of their meetings. She asks the girl to play a character for this and to be called Nathalie.[3] Nathalie accepts and a very ambiguous relationship is created between the two women. Nathalie uses very crude words to describe her meetings with Bernard.[4] Many times the contract between the two women is broken (because it goes too far or because Catherine is no longer sure of what she wants) but each time Catherine relaunches the relationship.

The two women get so close that when Nathalie finds herself homeless, Catherine finds her new accommodation, she also introduces Nathalie to her mother. The relationship is complicated when Nathalie, still playing her role, announces to Catherine that Bernard wants to live with her. Catherine asks for explanations from her husband who swears that he has no other woman in his life. Perplexed, Catherine leads Bernard into the bistro which is her meeting place with Nathalie. When Nathalie enters the establishment and sees the couple, she flees. Nathalie then confides in Catherine that she made everything up and that she never met Bernard. Catherine decides to "forgive and forget".[2]


The role of Nathalie was initially to be played by Vanessa Paradis, but the actress had to decline the role because of pregnancy.[citation needed]


On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 71% based on reviews from 24 critics.[5] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 69% based on reviews from 11 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[6]

Derek Elley of Variety wrote: "An intellectual-cum-sexual teaser whose twist is apparent far too early on."[7] Kirk Honeycutt of The Hollywood Reporter called it "An unconvincing psychosexual drama that tries to reconfigure the classic romantic triangle but winds up looking like a preposterous pretzel."[8]


Director Atom Egoyan remade the film in 2009 under the title Chloe.[9] The film stars Julianne Moore, Liam Neeson, and Amanda Seyfried. Elizabeth Weizmann of the New York Daily News contrasting the original with the remake says Egoyan "Having adapted a film—via Erin Cressida Wilson's screenplay—from an erotic French drama called Nathalie, Egoyan appears convinced that he's creating a suspenseful work of art, rather than a mildly kinky bit of arthouse exploitation."[9] In his self-promotion, the director of the remake, Egoyan, described Chloe as more erotically charged than Nathalie...[10]


  1. ^ "Nathalie (2004)". JPBox-Office. Retrieved 15 December 2019.
  2. ^ a b Schager, Nick (7 April 2006). "Review: Nathalie…". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 15 December 2019.
  3. ^ Bradshaw, Peter (16 July 2004). "Nathalie ... | Reviews". Retrieved 15 December 2019.
  4. ^ Cavagna, Carlo (December 2004). "Nathalie... (2003)". Retrieved 15 December 2019.
  5. ^ Nathalie... at Rotten Tomatoes
  6. ^ Nathalie... at Metacritic
  7. ^ Elley, Derek (1 October 2003). "Nathalie . . ". Variety.
  8. ^ Kirk Honeycutt (23 September 2003). "Nathalie ..." The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 5 October 2003.
  9. ^ a b "Atom Egoyan's 'Chloe,' starring Julianne Moore, is a tacky 'Fatal Attraction' for the lesbian set" by Elizabeth Weizmann
  10. ^ 'Heroic' Neeson helped ready Chloe for TIFF, by Peter Howell

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