Synopsis: This story is set in 1930, at the time when French colonial rule in Indochina is ending. A widowed French woman who works in the rubber fields, raises a Vietnamese princess as if she was her own daughter. She, and her daughter both fall in love with a young French navy officer, which will change both their lives significantly.
Genre: Drama, Romance
Director(s): Régis Wargnier
Production: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  Won 1 Oscar. Another 11 wins & 12 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
159 min


I never left Indochina.

Camille's hand was ice cold in mine.

Her father and mother had just died.

They had been my dearest friends.

Their plane had crashed

into the ocean.

I had no children.

She had no parents.

The little princess of Annam

became my daughter.

I adopted her.

Prince N'Guyen, his wife and I

had been inseparable.

In our youth we thought...

the world consisted

of inseparable things...

men and women...

mountains and plains...

humans and gods...

Indochina and France.

By adopting Camille

I inherited her parents' land...

increasing the property

my father and I already owned.

The Lang-Sai rubber plantation...

became one of

Indochina's ten biggest.

That was my domain:

15,000 acres of rubber trees.


Watch it!

Mama! We'll never get it right.

Is something upsetting you?

Tomorrow, send away

Mr. Emile's new girl.

Send Hoa away? Why?

Too greedy, too expensive,

bad girl...

mouth too big...

always wants more.

Today it's rice,

tomorrow it's pig...

after that it's buffalo.

Me know many girls

ready to replace her.

Very nice ones,

with smaller mouths.

No. This one you will keep.

Father has never felt better.

He's almost cheerful.

He might even smile soon.

You keep her.

Congaie is no good.

Love costs too much.

But he's happy.

He may never love again.

Does your father train them

a lot?

Every morning

for the past month.

Then they're too tired to work

on the plantation, but he's happy.

Rowing is exhausting.

Harder! Harder!

And in this heat!

Your men-- okay, I understand.

But mine?

Still, I hope my sailors beat them!

But, Admiral, it's my crew.

Eliane, we shouldn't give

these people ideas of victory.

I bet you 2,000 piastres.

Fine, but you'll lose.

Oh, stop it!

In your condition!

Some days you drive me crazy.

We haven't done it in a week.

And what do we do at nap time?

That's not really making love.

And be pregnant during monsoon season?

No thanks! Not me!

Time to go all out!

Madame Devries,

how awful for Mr. Emile!

All that training,

and then to lose. How awful!

Like Raymond says, the Indo-Chinese

aren't built for it. Eh, Raymond?

Calm down, Yvette.

They haven't lost yet.

We won!

Admiral, you owe me 2,000 piastres.

Who won? I saw nothing.

Ladies and gentlemen,

the race was won...

by the crew of Madame Eliane Devries.

Crew members...

Lui Van Min,

Phan Van Dong--

Mr. Emile Devries!

A statue of Joan of Arc,

in stucco...

of uncertain origin,

attributed to a student of Bouscasse.

Bidding starts at 600 piastres.

Sorry I'm late, madame.

I almost bought a bedroom set,

but I only liked the bed.

Buy the bed.

Oh, no. The pieces

have always been together.

They shouldn't be separated.

They'll bring good luck

to whoever buys them.

You are poetic.

That's exactly it, Yvette.

You're a poetic person.

Is that what you came for?

Has everyone seen it?

Thank you, Mr. Gabriel.

Painted with great sensitivity.

Starting price, 300.

Three hundred.

- Four hundred.

- Four-twenty.



Five hundred.

Madame, please let me have

the painting.

They say you're rich.

I'm not.

I can't continue bidding,

but this landscape means a lot to me.

Sit down, sir.

What is your bid?


- Wait.

- Stop. I'll lend you the money.

Let go!

Tell me why you like it...

and it's yours.

That's enough.

Madame Devries, 500?

I sketched that landscape

dozens of times as a boy.

But I was never satisfied.

It needed...

that valley and hill

in partial shade.

They don't exist.

The artist invented them.

Me, I wouldn't have dared.

At age ten, one doesn't know

the world needs to be changed.

I need this painting.

I suffocate in Saigon

without the seashore.

I do not parade my feelings

before strangers, as you do.

Especially when something moves me.

All right.

The benefit of the doubt, then.


Madame Devries is a collector.


Mind your own business!

Me no trafficker.

Me never traffic opium.

French officer knows me.

My madame sick...

I go get medicine.

What is the time?

09, Lieutenant.

No boats in the delta after 8:00.

You know what to do.

Stop! That man 's papers are in order!

You're crazy!

They didn't do anything!

In just one year,

they've drained you!

You're already glassy-eyed,

like someone lying in an opium den.

Soon this country will suck you dry.

They'll drown!

Are you proud of yourself?

I followed orders.

I leave indulgence

and generosity to you.

You're like my father.

He always said the same thing.

"Let yourself go.

Follow your instincts."

And he'd disappear

to pursue some passion.

He spread unhappiness

all around him.

I'll never be like that man.

Nobody'll steal what's in my head.

Not even eternal Asia!


You wanted to run away.

You're a deserter. You made me beat you.

You think mothers like

beating their children?

You're my mother and father.

Why are you here?

I'm lost.

I took a wrong turn.

Going where?

I'm looking for the occupants

of a sampan the navy sank last week.

I heard it happened near here.

So you're the one

going village to village.

You're wasting your time.

People here won't tell you a thing.

Would you know something?


He's called Liem.

Let him go.

You're scaring him.

His father's fine too.

He came to see me last night.

We talked very late.

I ordered the sampan sunk.

I thought the boy had drowned.

I even dreamt about it.

I kept seeing it.

Why did you do it?

I had to.

You were right.

There was opium aboard.

They're traffickers...

of high-quality opium.

Bao, the man you sank,

is a well-known supplier.

His father was before him,

and his son will be after him.

If you repeat what I've said,

I'll deny it all.

Don't you mind

how they look at you?

Why should I?

They're my coolies.

They're also men.

I'm their boss, that's all.

Commanding men is a man's job.

Men usually say that.

What's wrong?

I'm regressing back to childhood.

I had to stay this way for hours.

My head would spin.

I'd start dreaming.


About what?

The admiral who defeated

the Turkish fleet at Lepante.

He was 23.

The hero of all of Europe.

Don Juan of Austria.

What did you dream about?

I wanted to be a boy.

And now?

I don't need to dream.

Everything I love is right here.


Don't move.

I think it's stopped now.

Don't get lost this time.

The chief is back from his trip.

What's his mood?

It's always good to see you.

A secret?

With all these people?

Luxury, mystery--

That's all it takes

to seduce a woman.

- You look tired.

- This time it's serious.

In Canton the offensive is ready.

The communists and nationalists

have joined forces.

With Moscow's blessing.

To us!

Now you have no choice.

You'll need protection.

And marriage is

the best protection.

- They're looking.

- I don't care.

No, what?

About the marriage, no.

Very well. To friendship.


Tanh will forget me in Paris

when he meets those French girls.

Honestly, how do I look?

Rate this script:5.0 / 2 votes

Erik Orsenna

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Indochine" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 13 Jul 2024. <>.

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