Henri Fortin is poor and iliterate former boxer. Ziman is rich Jewish lawyer from Paris. During WWII they meet when Fortin agrees to drive Ziman's family to Switzerland. Intrigued by Victor... See full summary »
Jean-Louis and Anne have had their fling and separated. Now 20 years have passed. He is still dating various women. She is now a big time director whose most recent film was a very ... See full summary »
Robert Colomb, a famous TV newscaster, is married to Catherine, but is continually unfaithful. He is about to replace his current mistress, Mireille, with Jacqueline when he meets, and ... See full summary »
Released from prison apparently under a New Year amnesty, a criminal tries to pick up the threads of a life changed not only by his daring plan to rob a jewellers in out-of-season Cannes ... See full summary »
Jesus is a French gypsy who might have become a bull fighter had he not been framed on a drug charge and sent to prison. Odona is a con artist pursued and protected by a Paris policeman. ... See full summary »
On the day Jean Gabin dies, a kidnaper who also takes a fortune in jewels heisted from Cartiers murders Simon Verini's wife. (Simon was fencing the jewels for a youthful gang who robbed ... See full summary »
Old woman Berthe leaves her house to live in her daugter Emilie's one. Emilie and her brother Antoine have fallen out three years ago and have not seen each other since, but Emilie invites ... See full summary »
Though Chance or Coincidence is a film surficially concerned with death and grief, never have I enjoyed a film that deals with this most emotive subject in so trenchantly and poignantly a manner, while at the same time managing to exude such effulgence and vitality.
Its singularity is born perhaps of the balletic theme that runs throughout; the main character's passion for the art form making for some glorious set-pieces as well as a subject that, delightfully, elects to express her feelings through dance at the most unlikely moments.
Indubitably the exuberance of the cinematography plays its part; when its subjects dance, both dramatically and literally, rather than observe, the camera becomes a part of their movement, follows, and joins in.
And mention must be made of the glorious lighting; of a French film dealing at least in part with such themes of darkness and tragedy, this is an atypical example in its determined eschewing of any visual reticence or gloom in favour of an almost pugnacious optimism allied to a vibrancy that lends each scene a unique glow, becoming a light that radiates through the film as a whole, that rather than lessening the impact of its more emotionally affecting moments, prevents it from ever becoming maudlin or depressing.
Could the secret lie in the film's wilfully idiosyncratic handling of plot? Certainly this is a rich conceptual concoction, featuring a particularly exciting device in the video camera that plays such a pivotal role in an interesting, joyfully unpredictable tale.
Surely the secret is in the script, sharp and intelligent, interpreted in a range of superb performances from the cast; particularly enchanting is that of star Alessandra Martines, wife of director Claude Lelouch, in whose beautifully expressive eyes we may find the secret yet...
But ultimately, of course -- and predictably -- I will have to say that it is all of these. Chance or Coincidence was a wonderful surprise in all respects, as it will be to anyone who watches it, and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
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