|Index||7 reviews in total|
What a wonderful little movie! I would definitely consider this a chick flick, but it transcends in its writing and humor. I saw this movie last night and still can't get it out of my head. At times the dialogue was so truthful and heartfelt that I cried. The movie juxtaposes real-life relationships with those of fiction and shows us how and why we sometimes get confused. I found one of the main characters, Lena, absolutely believable. Its not often that you can look at an actress and think that maybe you went to school with her or you just saw her get off an elevator where you work. This affect of having a real-looking actress added a necessary verisimilitude to the story, it's easy to see yourself in her shoes. At one point, the characters talk about the inspiration to love as being terribly important. Well, after seeing this film I felt the inspiration indeed.
The movie is based on an usual triangle or maybe an unusual polygon if
the male characters are included in the count. It is a straightforward
telling of what happens in the life of two sisters in their late
twenties more or less except... and the except is that along with real
life, we see the fantasied versions of events as the older sister, a
romance writer, imagines them. The use of a stage set background for
the fantasies sets them apart from the real events in the sisters'
Although technically, the movie is very straightforward, the use of music -- the younger sister is a cellist -- heightens almost every scene. A male violin soloist becomes part of the younger sister's real and imagined life (her fantasies are not made visible) and in fact knowing him changes her life in a way she doesn't expect. I keep thinking about the paradoxical but plausible view of her situation. Maybe the older sister's destiny is less plausible but, hey, the movie is billed as a comedy.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
It was about what I expected. Worth seeing. A tad slow in spots but the acting held my interest and overall this was a colorful film. A mostly endearing captivating flick. Notable on screen chemistry between Jonathan Zaccaï and Marion Cotillard. This was my first time seeing Julie Depardieu and I could watch her over and over, delightful actress. This was a first time viewing a movie with this director and I will make a point to find more. It did seem like cinematography talent was wasted and segued into a bit of sand by the creative directive. The ending held full potential to make or break the movie and had a full hand to tip it over into the next quality zone. I feel the placard animation added some crunchy flavor but at the ending was like drawing a deuce instead of an Ace and, and ended in a perfect fold of a cohesive tie -in ending. That left me frustrated, confused, and angry in a non thought provoking manner. However it did spurn me to create a user ID to IDMDB and write my first review.
There is something about this film that lifts it above the ordinary
chick flick. The acting, on the whole, is pretty good. The actors who
play string instruments were coached by a professional musician, and
their 'miming' is convincing. What I found really touching is the
inability of the main characters to communicate, to say the things that
they really want to say, at the time they would matter most. In real
life, people who seem 'destined' for each other don't always get each
other. We tend to cling to comfortable but unfulfilling work or
relationships and fear the consequences of taking a leap into the
unknown. Fortunately, 'Toi et moi' avoids easy answers.
On the minus side, the storyline could have been better developed. It tends to drag a bit in the middle, the graphic novel gimmick is overused, and the character of the sisters' aunt (Chantal Lauby) could have played a more prominent role. Despite these flaws, this is a film well worth seeing.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a tale about two sisters. Ariane, a blonde young Parisian, is
hopefully romantic. She works for one of those publications that sell
'comic romances' which are illustrated with photographs. Ariane spends
her days in a sort of reverie composing situations in which she sees
herself as the female model for her own stories. Most of her plots
involve Farid, an attractive man who does not seem to share her
enthusiasm, spending as much as he can away from her.
Lena, the other sibling, is a cellist working with an musical ensemble. When we first meet her, she is performing in London. It is the kind of orchestra much like the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra a group who plays music without a conductor. The guest soloist, Mark, catches her eye. They briefly date, but at the end of the tour, Lena goes back to Paris, and Mark, who is in demand, goes to Tokyo. Lena and Mark had an affair before he leaves for the Far East.
The sisters live apart, but see each other frequently. Ariane's building is under repairs and Pablo, a Spaniard worker, becomes friendly with her. Ariane likes the man, but her heart is set on Farid. Lena, on the other hand, is involved with Francois, a man who one can see does not have what Lena is looking for. Ariane comes to realize Farid has no intentions for anything serious, while falling, little by little for the kinder Pablo. Lena and Francois come to a decision to split, but in her heart she wants Mark, who only reappears in her life at the end of the story, two years later. Mark confesses he has married, thus ending her dreams of sharing her life with him.
Directed by Julie Lopes-Curval and shown on a French cable channel. The film is a light comedy with two endearing young actresses and a whimsical screenplay by the director and Sophie Hiet. "Toi et moi" surprises by Ms. Lopes-Curval's vision of how younger people in the present world still have dreams and aspirations for finding love and romance, such as Ariene and Lena. In the film Ariane's life is illustrated with photographs as though right out of the pages of one of those 'romance comics' which Ariene spends time elaborating, in which she sees herself as the heroine of her own stories.
Julie Depardieu does one of the best works we recall ever seeing her do on the screen. She is lovable as the woman who has set her eyes on a man who does not appreciate what he has. Ms. Depardieu is totally convincing in the way she portrays her character. Marion Cotillard's Lena is also quite right. She is not as lucky as her sister because fate did not help her in the romance department. She secretly craved for Mark, who had other priorities, not caring to spend the rest of her life with Francois. The ensemble playing works out well. Jonathan Zaccai plays Mark, a man who could not commit himself, yet wanting Lena. Sergio Peris-Mencheta makes a nice Pablo. Eric Berger and Chantal Lauby are seen in supporting roles.
Philippe Guilbert, the cinematographer does an outstanding job in capturing the locations in London and Paris. The score by Sebastian Schuller compliments the classical music heard as the classical ensemble plays fine music. One can only wish Ms. Lopes-Curval success in future endeavors.
What is it about French films? It seems that every French film I have seen grabs me immediately and keeps my attention throughout the entire movie. There is some magical thing that the French do in their films and I'm at a loss to understand what it is, but this movie does exactly the same thing. It truly is magic. The story is slight and a bit silly but the movie is so romantic and the cast so perfect who cares? I've always been in love with French women who I think are the sexiest on the planet and found French men to be creepy. But not here. The male leads are outstanding and keep up with the women very easily. But let's face it French films are known for their fantastic women and this film continues that idea delightfully. But the two men the two female leads end up with definitely keep your heart pumping and when love wins out in the end there isn't a dry eye in the house.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a film that suffers from not knowing who its audience is. I
would think the film would not appeal to women, as this is not a "happy
ever after" film--or at least it's not that way for everyone. Plus it's
hard to relate to such flawed characters. If you're a guy, you probably
will have little respect for the two female leads, as they seem
hopelessly unwilling to be loved.
The film is about two sisters who don't look alike and their love lives appear very different, but down deep they are both horribly screwed up and unable to love. Lena has a live-in boyfriend but is very emotionally constricted and cold. She builds walls around herself in a figurative sense. When she finally tries to pull down the walls, she is very selfish and hurts the boyfriend with little regard to his feelings. Nice lady. Ariane simply has no self-esteem---none. Her steady boyfriend won't commit emotionally. Heck, after dating two years, he won't even refer to her as his girlfriend. and only calls her when he wants her around--otherwise, he's always aloof and self-involved. Yet, despite this, she's very, very dependent and needy. Her job is writing bad romantic stories for a magazine and she retreats into the fantasy world instead of facing up to the fact that her lover is a jerk. It's a shame, too, as these fantasy interludes in the movie could have been really entertaining--too bad they are so short and seem almost irrelevant most times you see them.
Ultimately the viewer is left hating or at least being annoyed with both ladies and this leads to the problem with the film. If you don't care about the ladies or actively dislike them, why would you ever think about recommending this film to a friend or keep watching it? My advice...don't. This film is a truly cynical look at what they say is love, though little of what I saw appeared loving or interesting.
Decent acting can't undo a cold and unlikable script.
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