France , Italy
Eight women gather to celebrate Christmas in a snowbound cottage, only to find the family patriarch dead with a knife in his back. Trapped in the house, every woman becomes a suspect, each having her own motive and secret.
In France of the late 19th century, the wife of a wealthy general, the Countess Louise, sells the earrings her husband gave her on their wedding day to pay off debts; she claims to have lost them. Her husband quickly learns of the deceit, which is the beginning of many tragic misunderstandings, all involving the earrings, the general, the countess, & her new lover, the Italian Baron Donati.
Betrayed by an informant, Philippe Gerbier finds himself trapped in a torturous Nazi prison camp. Though Gerbier escapes to rejoin the Resistance in occupied Marseilles, France, and exacts his revenge on the informant, he must continue a quiet, seemingly endless battle against the Nazis in an atmosphere of tension, paranoia and distrust.
Stanislas Hassler blazes the development of modern art in his gallery, packed with works of surprising shapes, colours and textures, and where exhibitions turn into media events. Gilbert Moreau is one of the artists whose sculptures are on display in the gallery. His wife, Josée, is intrigued by the stern Stanislas, who devotes his free time to photography in an apartment that highlights his sophisticated artistic tastes. But besides enlarged pictures of calligraphic samples, Stanislas is amassing a collection of photographs that reveal a disturbed character. So why would Josée endanger her mature relationship with Gilbert for the morbid observation of Stanislas’s hidden personality?
In the South American jungle, supplies of nitroglycerine are needed at a remote oil field. The oil company pays four men to deliver the supplies in two trucks. A tense rivalry develops between the two sets of drivers on the rough remote roads where the slightest jolt can result in death.
An ornithologist mistaken for an explosives expert is sent alone into a small French town during WWI to investigate a garbled report from the resistance about a bomb which the departing Germans have set to blow up a weapons cache.
The story is one of an architect that has lost his inspiration and goes looking for those motivations that pushed him as a youngster to take up the profession. Inspiring him was the baroque movement and all of its artifices: the Guarini in Turin and the Borromini in Rome. The film’s central story ends up being the love story that develops between architecture, artistic inspiration and feelings.