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[Tiff Review] Parisienne

Many deflect from it, but a writer/director’s intent can change the viewer’s outlook on his/her film. Danielle Arbid‘s fictional coming-of-age drama about a college-aged immigrant from Lebanon to France (Manal Issa‘s Lina) is one containing many new acquaintances able to help her find the freedom she covets but never found back home. It can prove convenient because of this since she never truly hits rock bottom like many in her situation do. Instead there’s always a guardian angel watching out for her—sometimes manipulated and sometimes a compassionate soul. While trying to reconcile her luck with the unfortunate and horrific acts befalling her can be overwhelming, hearing Arbid state her goal as providing a “‘Thank you’ to the people who shaped [her own] life” goes a long way towards accepting its almost stifling optimism.

Parisienne isn’t therefore a strict autobiography as much as a
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It Happened in Saint Tropez | Colcoa Review

Those Who Love Me Can Catch the Train Wreck: Thompson’s Latest Flat, Overstuffed

Familial relationships and transportation, two favorite themes of writer/director Daniele Thompson, figure heavily in her latest feature, It Happened in Saint Tropez, a breezy situational comedy that suffers from a hokey forced charm, beginning with its misleading English title translation (the original title, Des gens qui s’embrassent should be something along the lines of People Who Embrace). A cousin in tone to something like Anne Fontaine’s 2009 bauble headed The Girl From Monaco, it unfortunately fails to match the effervescent enchantment of some of Thompson’s past titles, like her lovely 2006 film, Avenue Montaigne.

Noga (Lou de Laage) is a young cellist living in New York with her intense musician parents, Irene (Valerie Bonneton) and Zef (Eric Elmosnino). Familial drama rears its head in their isolated universe by the upcoming wedding of Zef’s
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7 Days in Havana; The Players – review

Two portmanteau films released in the same week looks like carelessness. It amounts to reviewing, in effect, 16 films in a row. We'll start in Havana, where seven directors (including Benicio del Toro, Pablo Trapero, Laurent Cantet, Elia Suleiman, Gaspar Noé) contribute one short, set on a different day of the same week in the Cuban capital. Part-sponsored by Havana Club rum, the drink features heavily and several of the films are little more than extended adverts. The faded grandeur of the Hotel Nacional features prominently and cliches of ladyboys, cigars, daiquiris and rafts to Miami abound. I liked Noé's Friday film, a throbbing, flashing voodoo phantasma about a young girl undergoing a witch doctor ritual to "cure" her of lesbianism. Its darkness came as a relief amid all the postcard cuteness.

That said, Laurent Cantet, Palme d'Or winning director of The Class, delivers splashes of local colour anchored by a
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Inside Out 2012: ‘Bye Bye Blondie’ is suffused with libertine barbarism and moral ambivalence

Bye Bye Blondie

Written and directed by Virginie Despentes

France, 2011

Perhaps a paean to the 1960 stage musical and its 1963 film adaptation, Bye Bye Birdie, Virginie DespentesBye Bye Blondie tries to be the social satire its American counterpart was. But with a protagonist suffused with libertine barbarism and a narrative of moral ambivalence, the film, quite ironically, presents the characters as malevolent, not society.

In the northeastern French city of Nancy, Gloria (Béatrice Dalle) lives a decidedly involuntary bohemian lifestyle, spending her time drifting from record shops and bars. Meanwhile, Frances (Emmanuelle Béart), her once childhood summer romance, is a successful television host in Paris.

Her life unfulfilled, Frances plays a beard in a lavender marriage to a writer, Claude (Pascal Greggory), and in order to regain passion in her life, she attempts to reconnect with Gloria. Drastically different from when they last met, the two women must try to
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Nobody Else But You Movie Review

Nobody Else But You Movie Review
Title: Nobody Else But You Director: Gerald Hustache-Mathieu Starring: Jean-Paul Rouve, Sophie Quinton, Guillaume Gouix, Arsinee Khanjian, Olivier Rabourdin, Clara Ponsot Quirky but never false, French import “Nobody Else But You,” from writer-director Gerald Hustache-Mathieu, is a terrifically involving murder mystery that invests in psychological parallelism, and a kind of dark, fated bond between victim and investigator. Traversing pulpy territory, but largely with a tenderness and intelligence matched only by its crisp characterizations, the film’s droll grip loosens in the third act, under the weight of some metaphorical highlighting, but there’s still plenty of enjoy here for arthouse and mystery fans alike. Beset by writer’s block, Parisian crime novelist David [ Read More ]
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Lff 2011: Nobody Else But You (Poupoupidou) Review

  • HeyUGuys
Wider aspirations dominate proceedings in Gerald Hustache-Mathieu’s frothy thriller, Nobody Else But You, both in the filmmaking and the story itself.

Nobody Else But You focuses on a recently deceased character, local pin-up turned weather girl and cheese mascot Martine Langevin (Sophie Quinton). Martine adopts the stage name Candice Lecoeur, following her ‘discovery’ at a petrol station, where she works, by a photographer. Her aspirations look beyond the small town life that at first seems set out for her and she quickly becomes a celebrity, but significantly only in her home town of Mouthe.

Narrated from the grave and through her diaries, Candice’s intriguing story is slowly uncovered by amateur sleuth and fiction writer David Rousseau (Jean-Paul Rouve) who becomes fascinated by the mystery surrounding her death.

Although originally only visiting the town, to collect on the will of a recently deceased relative, Rousseau decides to stay and
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