Haute Couture

Esther, played by renowned actress Nathalie Baye (Catch Me if You Can), is the lonely head seamstress at Dior. She prepares to work on her final collection of haute couture before she is forced into retirement. On her way to work at the atelier, her bag is stolen in the subway by a young Catholic woman named Jade, played by Lyna Khoudri (The French Dispatch). Jade and her friends discover a necklace with a Jewish star in Esther’s purse, and she regrets her actions and decides to return it. When they meet, Esther takes one look at Jade’s hands and becomes convinced that Jade has a special gift. Instead of calling the police, she offers Jade a fashion internship and the chance to embark on a craft that nourishes resiliency, passion and the imagination. Director Sylvie Ohayon’s compelling film about complex female friendships and mother-daughter relationships captures two contrasting worlds—the alluring, affluent and exclusive world of Paris fashion and the neighboring suburban projects—to explore issues of race, religion, ethnicity and economic class. Esther and Jade’s disparate lives soon become as entangled as the threads in their needlework. 

Sponsored by The Ullendorff Memorial Foundation

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w/English Subtitle
Release Year
Festival Year(s)
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San Francisco Premiere