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1 item from 2002

Ma Femme ... S'appelle Maurice

8 October 2002 | The Hollywood Reporter | See recent The Hollywood Reporter news »

("Ma Femme ... s'appelle Maurice" screened as the Centerpiece Gala Premiere feature at the Hollywood Film Festival on Oct. 3.)

Jean-Marie Poire is the man behind one of France's biggest-ever boxoffice hits, "Les Visiteurs". With more than 114,000 admissions in its first 10 days, there seems no doubt that his latest movie, "Ma Femme ... s'appelle Maurice" (My Wife Maurice), is headed in the same direction.

The plot is pure farce. Georges (Philippe Chevallier) is having an affair with Emmanuelle (Alice Evans). When she finds out Georges is married, she is furious and decides to reveal all to his wife. While Georges is waiting for Emmanuelle to arrive at his chic Paris apartment for the showdown, he receives a visit from Maurice (Regis Laspales), who is collecting funds for a local charity. Georges persuades Maurice to dress up as his wife and head off Emmanuelle at the door. Predictably, the ruse fails and mayhem ensues as both men work themselves deeper and deeper into a web of deceit.

The two main actors give it their best shot, and the movie cracks along at a brisk pace for the first 30 minutes. Gag follows gag, and Laspales is very funny as the irritating, obsessive Maurice. But once things unravel, the movie falls back on cliche and stereotype and offers nothing new. There is too much dialogue and not enough action. Also, Poire's penchant for cutting from one scene to another in quick succession has a disorienting effect.

Poire's comedy often pushes the definition of good taste to its limit. Many of his jokes are vulgar and crass. Too often, they're downright puerile. Numerous French stars lend their services -- Anemone, Paul Belmondo, Virginie Ledoyen, Guy Marchand, Stephane Audran -- but their presence fails to lift an essentially dated concept.


Comedie Star


Director: Jean Marie Poire

Screenwriters: Jean-Marie Poire, Raffy Shart

Producer: Igor Sekulic

Director of photography: Robert Alazraki

Production designer: Katia Wyszkop

Costume designer: Olivier Beriot

Editors: Jean Marie Poire, Henry Revlou


Georges Audefey: Philippe Chevallier

Maurice Lappin: Regis Laspales

Emmanuelle: Alice Evans

Johnny Zucchini: Gotz Otto

Claire Trouabal: Anemone

Running time -- 102 minutes

No MPPA rating


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1 item from 2002

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