July 24, 2015

Paris in July: Les femmes du 6e étage



My reading has been a little inorganisé, but I loved this French film I found at the library.  We're in 1962, in the elegant Paris apartment building that is home to Monsieur et Madame Joubert.  M. Joubert is a quiet, gentle stockbroker, running the firm that he has inherited from his father and hopes to pass on to one of his sons, and fussing over how long his morning egg is cooked. Mme. Joubert is {as she describes herself} a girl from the provinces, a little insecure, a lady who lunches, visits her dressmaker and gossips with her friends. When they part ways with Germaine, who has been the maid for the Jouberts and his parents before them for 25 years, the other ladies tell her that no one has maids from Brittany any more, they're all from Spain. These are the women on the 6th floor, lively middle-aged women living in tiny rooms in the attic and looking out for each other. One of them takes in her beautiful young niece, Maria, and she finds work as the Joubert's new maid.

M. Joubert begins to notice the women who live over his head, to wonder about their lives, to help them in little ways — and, but of course, to fall innocently in love with Maria. But when he is carried along to a paella party in the flat he has found for a maid who is beaten by her husband, Mme. Joubert is convinced that he is really having an affair with a rich widow who comes to him as a client, a woman who her friends tell her is a maneater. When she kicks him out, it's the perfect chance for him to move into a little storage room on the sixth floor, the first room of his own that he has ever had.

It's all a little sweet, and funny, and charming, and all in all, a wonderful way to end the week.

4 comments:

Arabella said...

This sounds like a really fun movie.

JoAnn said...

Delightful! Will check the library after vacation...

Jane @ Beyond Eden Rock said...

This sounds lovely, and I wish I had a library that stocked such things.

Lory said...

This does look good, putting it on my list to watch with my husband.