A "normal" guy who is married to a hot actress gets worried that she is involved with her costar. This worry turns into jealousy and causes problems in their relationship. This is a story about trust and a comedy about the actions between men and women.
Three men, three women, opposites, possibilities, and tastes. Castella owns a industrial steel barrel plant in Rouen; Bruno is his flute-playing driver, Franck is his temporary bodyguard ... See full summary »
A psychologically troubled novelty supplier is nudged towards a romance with an English woman, all the while being extorted by a phone-sex line run by a crooked mattress salesman, and purchasing stunning amounts of pudding.
Paul Thomas Anderson
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Paris can boast a population of 2,125,246. Of these 1,153,000 are women and 10,000 are actresses. Yvan, a young sports writer, is married to one who is very well known - Charlotte. They try to live a normal life, but her fame makes it difficult - autograph hunters interrupt their dinners, cops about to serve traffic summonses let them off with a warning and a smile when they recognize her, and impossible-to-get restaurant reservations magically appear when Charlotte makes the calls instead of Yvan. All this threatens and challenges his male ego, but Yvan is able to take her stardom in stride. Until, that is, a man at a bar asks him if he gets jealous watching his wife make love in the nude to another man on screen. It has never seriously bothered him before, but the stranger sows the first seed of doubt in his head... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Director/writer/co-star Yvan Attal is actually married to co-star Charlotte Gainsbourg, an effervescent and shimmering bilingual (French/English) beauty. And they both can act.
This is a comedy with a dark but non-violent edge. Gainsbourg plays "Charlotte," a star of both French and English films who graciously dispenses autographs left and right and during dinner at restaurants. Attal plays "Yvan," a doting but increasingly disturbed sportscaster who wears down dealing with his wife's intrusive fans and, more critically, his mounting fears that she is having it off with her aging but still presumably babe-magnet co-star in a London studio filming, "John" (Terence Stamp)
Yvan apparently is underutilized at work because he has the time to brood deeply and split to London whenever his antagonistic feelings of longing for and suspicion of his spouse surface (which they do increasingly).
Stamp gives a delightful portrayal of an old actor whose wife doesn't understand him but he's straddling the pursuit of Charlotte with the subtle reality that he's getting a bit old for that sort of thing. Stamp brings a bemused actor's attempts at dalliance to life.
There's an extraneous sub-plot in which Yvan's sister, seriously Jewish, belabors her non-Jewish husband to agree to be circumcised as they await the birth of their first child. This irrelevant and uninteresting side story at least stretches the film out to a barely respectable 93 minutes, justifying the $10 admission.
There are amusing scenes, the best being when Charlotte negotiates with her frenetic director for terms on which to appear naked in a scene. The resolution is both predictable and hilarious.
While few of us have mates or lovers who are in the public eye as Charlotte is, Yvan's increasing jealousy will strike a familiar chord with many viewers. In real life happy endings to episodes of mounting distrust, approaching paranoia, are few.
A good, enjoyable film. But now I'm wondering about the real life marriage of Yvan and Charlotte.
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