The Women on the 6th Floor (Les Femmes du 6e Étage)

You will laugh.   Life and love grow cracking walls between class and culture… just a bit.

In Philippe de Guay’s small comedy “Les Femme du 6e Étage” the curiosity of Jean-Louis (Fabrice Luchini), a wealthy broker living on first floor of the Paris building in which he grew up, leads him to venture… upstairs.

Jean-Louis and his wife (Sandrine Kiberlain) live lives of empty order sustained in small detail (a 3 1/2 minute- egg is the key to a successful day).  When they fire their devoted maid of twenty years without a second thought, a new maid, Maria (Natalia Berbeke), introduces Jean-Louis’ to the world of “The Women on the 6th Floor.”

Jean-Louis follows Maria upstairs to see where she lives.  With him we enter the passionate struggles and delights of a vibrant divergent community of Spanish maids.

Actresses Concha Galán, Bertha Ojea, and Nuria Solé brilliantly draw these women. The writing of Le Guay and Tonnerre could bring grimaces with lesser performances. Particularly unfortunate is an easy dismissal of the radical voice  of Carmen (Lola Dueñas).

Jean-Louis “discovers” oppressive living conditions long ignored and with gentle compassion and easy acts of kindness becomes the women’s patron saint while still the patrón.

It is a charming and funny film with a modest dose of truth.  It is worth tracking down.  You will get over the minor romantic “ick” factor with a smile.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *