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A triangle: love, obsession, and choice. Pierre, a ladies' man who has little cash and no fixed residence, describes his best friend Benoît as the world's oldest 32-year-old. The shy, well-employed Benoît's life changes when he answers the personal ad of Marie, a 25-year-old who restores paintings. He's attracted to her and she likes his steady calm and his honest attention. They're soon a couple, and they include Pierre in their dinners, outings, and trips. What will happen when Pierre realizes that he too is in love with Marie? Written by
Long a fan of French films (Eric Rohmer is my favorite director), I rented "Love, etc." with high hopes. I have often found that even the most superficial of French films have more to say about life and relationships than the best Hollywood product.
"Love, etc." proved to be an exception. It starts off promisingly, successfully capturing the dynamics of a long-term friendship and the awkward dance common at the beginning of relationships. But it soon degenerates into a story of three superficial, unlikable characters with hard-to-fathom motivations. There is little evidence of "love" and much exploration of "etc.". The self-congratulatory "aren't-we-civilized-and-modern" final scene only serves to cap off what is, on the whole, a truly bad French film.
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