Mademoiselle is a French - British drama film directed by Tony Richardson. The dark drama won a BAFTA award and nomination and was featured in the 2007 Brooklyn Academy of Music French film retrospective. Jeanne Moreau plays an undetected sociopath, arsonist and poisoner, a respected visiting schoolteacher and sécretaire at the Mairie in a small French village.
As the film begins, Mademoiselle is shown opening floodgates to inundate the village, so there's never a moment in the film that the audience believes she's a normal upstanding citizen, as the villagers do. But the film provides little insight into her motivation; she has no cause for revenge, and acquires no material gain or increased standing in the community from her furtive crimes.
Out of pure prejudice, an Italian woodcutter (Manou, played in Italian by Ettore Manni) is the chief suspect. Sexual tension arises between Mademoiselle and Manou during a series of encounters in the forest. Finally, after a night of somewhat perverse intimacy in the fields, she falsely denounces him and the villagers hack him to death.
In a final scene, as Mademoiselle is leaving the village for ever, it is made obvious that the woodcutter's