In this 2003 remake of the classic 1952 French film, Fanfan la Tulipe is a swashbuckling lover who is tricked into joining the army of King Louis XV by Adeline La Franchise, who tells Fanfan that by doing so, he will eventually marry one of the king's daughters.
Cultural critic David Kepesh finds his life -- which he indicates is a state of "emancipated manhood" -- thrown into tragic disarray by Consuela Castillo, a well-mannered student who awakens a sense of sexual possessiveness in her teacher.
This pseudo noir film takes place in Barcelona. Bernadette and her former boyfriend, Jacques, have come looking for Alekos, the hunky Greek young artist and model, who has married Bernadette, then left her to come to Spain. Bernadette and Jacques have been told to go to Bardon, a private eye, who is good in pursuing missing persons. Brandon, in his quest for finding the missing man, receives a surprise when he becomes a victim of the investigation he is conducting.
Bardon, has his own problems. He is divorced, and his life is a mess. His grown up daughter, the sassy Elisa, is a girl that loves to do her own thing. On the other hand, his son, who is an executive involved with the upcoming Olympic games in the city, wants little to do with his old man. The wife, appears at strategic moments to pick on her former husband and ridicule him.
Rafael Alcazar tried to adapt Manuel Vazquez Montalban's novel into a film that unfortunately, doesn't make much sense. The basic flaw lies in the screen play the director wrote that sounds false from the start. We are not drawn into the action the way Mr. Alcazar has directed this movie.
The acting goes from the bad to the worse. Omero Antonutti, an Italian actor we had admired before has done excellent work for other Spanish directors, mainly Victor Erice, also with the Taviani brothers in his native country. One can only hope he was well paid for his efforts.
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