The movie takes place in a French boys’ boarding school run by a headmaster who makes life there as unpleasant for the teachers as for the boys. Michael Delasalle (Paul Meurisse) is a sadist and a pinchpenny who serves the students rotten fish and slaps around his wife Christina (Vera Clouzot), even though the school really belongs to her.

As the movie opens, Nicole is pressing ahead with a plan she has already explained to Christina. It’s an elaborate scheme in which they will visit Nicole’s home in a distant village, lure Michael there, drown him in a bathtub, and secretly return to the school to dump the swine in the swimming pool, where he will seem to be a suicide or accident victim.  But the body disappears from the pool and Michael’s suit is returned from the cleaners. Are the women going mad? Can they trust the evidence of their eyes and ears – or believe their clear memory of Michael’s dead body staring at them from beneath the water in the bathtub? ”

A second-rate boarding school in Saint-Cloud, Hauts-de-Seine, in the Paris metropolitan area, is run by the tyrannical and mean Michel Delassalle. The school is owned, though, by Delassalle’s teacher wife, the frail Christina, who immigrated from Venezuela. Delassalle also has a relationship with Nicole Horner, another teacher at the school. Rather than antagonism, the two women are shown to have a somewhat close relationship, primarily based on their apparent mutual hatred of Michel, who is physically and emotionally abusive to both, as well as unkind to the children.

Unable to stand his mistreatment any longer, Nicole devises a plan to get rid of Michel forever. Though hesitant at first, Christina ultimately consents to help Nicole. Using a threatened divorce to lure Michel to Nicole’s apartment building in Niort, a town several hundred kilometers away, Christina sedates him. The two women then drown him in a bathtub and, driving back to the school, dump his body in the neglected swimming pool. When his corpse floats to the surface, they think it will appear to have been an accident. Almost everything goes according to their plans until the body fails to surface. Michel’s corpse is nowhere to be found when the pool is drained.


Cast: Noël Roquevert as M. Herboux, Simone Signoret as Nicole Horner, Véra Clouzot as Christina Delassalle, Paul Meurisse as Michel Delassalle




Director : Henri-Georges Clouzot

First Release : 1955

Genre : Thriller

Duration :1h55

Production : FRANCE

Language : French with English subtitles


Location: AF Auditorium

Entry: Free and open to all