Director Claude Sautet seems to like the device of weekend country meetings of friends to lay bare their loves, work problems and human outlooks. Quintessentially French, with its series of petty piques, sudden dramas, macho male shenanigans and gathering femme lib, though latter is more personal than a concerted movement, pic benefits from homogeneous thesping and astute direction.
Main thread of the film is Marie (Romy Schneider). She is an attractive, fortyish woman who has decided to abort a child she is bearing and drop her lover. The affair is over for her. She has a 19-year-old son who lives with her.
Working as a draftsman, all her friends seem drawn mainly from her work. There are little sub-plots alongside Schneider’s march towards freedom of her actions. The odyssey ends with her having an affair with her ex-husband.
There is a friend with two kids who will not take back a husband who left her and admits to sometimes making money as an amateur joy girl, a shrewish woman, an easygoing unmarried girlfriend and a man at the end of his tether who is being fired though once a power in the company.
Schneider is radiant and effective as a woman reaching fulfillment and maturity, with Claude Brasseur properly vindictive as her discarded lover and yet appealing, and Bruno Cremer is right as the ex-husband who is more effective in business than in human relations.