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Pierre Jolivet is an interesting director, able direct any kind of movie, whatever its genre is : autobiographical drama ("Strictement Personel"), social movie ("Fred"), low budged fantastic ("simple mortel") or SF ("The last combat", with Luc Besson), or medieval action feature ("Le fils du guerrier"). And, as all this movies were made with the same serious, you know that, when he makes a romantic comedy like "Could this be love" - sorry, but because of my previous french movies enumeration, and for french is considered as "spelling mistakes" by IMDb, I have to tittle the movies in English...- , it will be nicely done (by that, I mean that it certainly will bellow to the genre that François Truffaut called, with irony, "cinema de qualité française"). And like his other movies, it is. But like his other movies, it also unfortunately doesn't really archive to be absolutely interesting and great. Once again, this movie is the proof that french contemporary romantic comedies, like this one or the latest Christian Vincent or Pierre Salvadori, will never reach their American models (and by that I mean movies from the 40's to the 60's, for it's definitely better than than an American garbage like "The Hollyday").
The movie deals with a rich enterprise boss (Vincent Lindon) who falls in love with an independent woman (Sandrine Bonnaire), who was hire by him as an artist in order to create a ceramic painting for his enterprise. But, for he's a paranoiac control freak, who's unable to trust a woman since a bad experience (his ex wife worked for a adverse enterprise and spied him for years), he asks the firm's chief of security (François Berléand in a perfect role) to watch her. And as he goes a little to far in his role, this situation will create incontrollable and huge problems. The script is the perfect pretext to explore, in a comical and funny way, what Jolivet called "the fear of love", witch is the ability we all have, in front of love, to find ways to avoid it, only guided by the fear to suffer (for a more ample and a little pretentious explanation of this concept, you can read the interview of Pierre Jolivet in the french cinema revue : Positif 552, who also praises the movie).
The situations are generally quite funny and credible, certainly thanks to the commitment of the actors to their characters. But the characters might really be the problem here : if Lindon's is very rich and eccentric (therefor interesting), Sandrine Bonnaire's one is a little too... hum, let's say normal. It's not really the actress' fault, for, except for showing a brightly smile, she doesn't have anything much to do, and seems really boring in front of her masculine partner. If he's exuberant, paranoiac, maniac, depressive, self centered and yet moving, she is..., well, allergic to cat, and that's about it.
And, in order to have a good romantic comedy, the two protagonists have to be equally interesting (ie : Carry Grant AND Catherine Heptburn), and give the impression to really match with one another. And if only one of the two characters works, only half the movie is really enjoyable.
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