Pierre and Manon are married and living in a slightly dilapidated Parisian apartment where they're behind on rent. In addition to odd jobs, Manon works in fragile harmony with Pierre on his documentary film projects, the latest of which is a portrait of a resistance fighter. One day Pierre takes Elisabeth, his assistant at the archives, as a lover. Pierre reacts with apathy and entitlement when Manon catches her husband in the act; however Manon, rather than leaving him, seeks common ground with her husband. It is only when Manon's own lover is revealed that their marriage begins to collapse.
A master of intimate and emotional ecologies, veteran French filmmaker Philppe Garrel plumbs the depths of infidelity— not merely the fact of it, but the particular, divergent ways in which it is experienced and understood by men and women. In the Shadow of Women premiered at Cannes' Quinzaine des Réalisateurs; Athens, where it won Best Film; and Seville, where it won Best Actress.