United Artists, 1965. Directed by
Louis Malle. Camera: Henri Decaë. With Jeanne Moreau,
Brigitte Bardot, George Hamilton, Paulette Dubost, Gregor von Rezzori, Poldo
Bendandi, Claudio Brook, Carlos Lòpez Moctezuma, Jonathan Eden, Francisco
Reiquera, Adriana Roel, José Baviera, José Ángel Espinosa, Fernando Wagner,
José Luis Campa, Roberto Campa, Eduardo Murillo, José Esqueda, Luis Rizo.
Maria O'Malley (Maria II), daughter of a
Frenchwoman and an Irish anarchist, is left alone in Central America
in 1910 when her father is killed during a revolution. Skilled
in guerrilla tactics, she escapes being captured and joins up with a
French circus performer, also named Maria, whose partner in their
song-and-dance act has killed herself over an unhappy love affair.
An accident during one of the performances, in which Maria II's
skirt tears, turns the act into a successful striptease routine.
As the company passes through the
country of San Miguel, the women are horrified at the treatment of
the people by the powerful Don Rodriguez. In anger, Maria II
shoots one of the soldiers who are looting a small village.
The troupe is rounded up and taken to Rodriguez' hacienda.
There the Marias meet the revolutionist Florès, who has been
captured and tied and bound; and the elder Maria falls in love with
Florès. Florès is shot, but upon his death, Maria I promises
to take up his cause.
The two women lead the peasants on
attacks on various government strongholds until they are captured
and sentenced to death by Father Superior, who is jealous of the
women's power. As both Marias face the firing squad, their
colleagues and fellow revolutionaries save them, hailing the women
The film was released in France and Italy in 1965. Locations
were filmed in Mexico. Music includes Selected songs, words and
music by Louis Malle and Jean-Claude Carriére.
American Film Institute
Poster artwork courtesy