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House of Tolerance (2011)

L'Apollonide (Souvenirs de la maison close) (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 25 November 2011 (USA)
At an elegant Parisian bordello at the dawn of the 20th century, exists a cloistered world of pleasure, pain, hope, rivalries, and most of all, slavery.


Bertrand Bonello


Bertrand Bonello (scenario)
6 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Noémie Lvovsky ... Marie-France
Hafsia Herzi ... Samira
Céline Sallette ... Clotilde
Jasmine Trinca ... Julie
Adèle Haenel ... Léa
Alice Barnole ... Madeleine
Iliana Zabeth ... Pauline
Pauline Jacquard
Judith Lou Lévy ... (as Judith Lou Levy)
Anaïs Thomas
Maia Sandoz ... (as Maïa Sandoz)
Joanna Grudzinska Joanna Grudzinska
Esther Garrel ... A prostitute
Xavier Beauvois ... Jacques
Louis-Do de Lencquesaing ... Michaux


Life in an elegant Parisian brothel in the early twentieth century. The madam essentially owns the women: their expenses exceed earnings, they are in debt. They face problems of pregnancy, opium, age, and violent clients. One reads sociology at her peril. Occasionally, a client talks of marriage. There are also friendships and affection among the women. The madam is in a dispute with her landlord and calls on influential clients to help. There's a picnic one summer day, a wake, and an evening in masks. Have they expectations? In a coda, we watch a street scene in contemporary Paris. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


An Aesthetic Shock.




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The casting says "Clotilde" but her name is misspelled (as "Clothilde", rather a common error in France) in the movie when we see the lines of name/debt written by the matron. See more »


A character says he's been to the inauguration ceremony of the Paris Metro. After that there is a scene where we hear fireworks for Bastille Day (14 July). The opening of the Paris Metro (Line 1) was on 19 July 1900, five days after Bastille Day. See more »


Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #2.23 (2011) See more »


La Boheme - Duo - O Soave Fanciulla
Written by Giacomo Puccini
L. Orgonasova - J. Welsh
See more »

User Reviews

empty sadness
16 May 2016 | by SnoopyStyleSee all my reviews

It's 1899 Paris. Marie-France Dallaire is the madame of the brothel L'Apollonide. As the months roll by, she is faced with debilitating rent increase from the landlord. Clotilde has been there for 12 years since she was 16. Julie is nicknamed Caca for her specialty. She dreams of going with her married customer Maurice. Léa mails away gifts of her pubic hair. Pauline Deshaies is a 15 year old who writes a letter applying for a job. The movie open with the Jewess Madeleine who has a prophetic dream. She is cut horribly by a customer. These and the other girls deal with the many issues as the brothel threatens to close.

I'm not sure if it's a deliberate idea from filmmaker Bertrand Bonello. There is a matter-of-factness to these women. I like to have more history to these interesting characters. It would be great to follow fewer of them and dig deeper into their lives. The Joker face is compelling visually. The tone is one of empty sadness. There isn't really any tension. The rent issue isn't that dramatic. I do have a big problem with the split screen scenes. There remind me of surveillance video and that takes me out of the movie.

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Release Date:

25 November 2011 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

House of Tolerance See more »

Filming Locations:

Paris, France


Box Office


EUR4,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,766, 27 November 2011

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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