A French public servant from Provence is banished to the far North. Strongly prejudiced against this cold and inhospitable place, he leaves his family behind to relocate temporarily there, with the firm intent to quickly come back.
A 9 minute comedy starring Dominique Pinon (Delicatessen). Featuring muted colors with a sepia black and white, Pinon takes the viewer through various examples of what he "likes and ... See full summary »
Avid movie-watcher and video store clerk Bazil has had his life all but ruined by weapons of war. His father was killed by a landmine in Morocco and one fateful night a stray bullet from a nearby shootout embeds itself in his skull, leaving him on the verge of instantaneous death. Losing his job and his home, Bazil wanders the streets until he meets Slammer, a pardoned convict who introduces him to a band of eccentric junkyard dealers including Calculator, a math expert and statistician, Buster, a record-holder in human cannonball feats, Tiny Pete, an artistic craftsman of automatons, and Elastic Girl, a sassy contortionist. When chance reveals to Bazil the two weapons manufacturers responsible for building the instruments of his destruction, he constructs a complex scheme for revenge that his newfound family is all too happy to help set in motion. Written by
The Massie Twins
When Bazil picks up the brass to determine who manufactured the ammunition which struck him in the head, the name of the manufacturer is stamped on the back of the brass, as is the norm, but there is no primer. Instead, the stamp occupies the entire surface. See more »
A sumptuous treat for everyone, proving just as effective across the language barriers
The unfortunate well-meaning Frenchman Bazil (Dany Boon) finds himself wishing ill upon wealthy industrialists Nicholas Thibault de Fenouillet (André Doussillier) and Francois Marconi (Nicolas Marié), the heads of two corrupt artillery corporations, who are responsible for both the tragic death of his father when Bazil was a boy, and the silver bullet lodged in his head and set to explode at any moment. Assisted by an abnormally-skilled gang of other military victims, Bazil endeavours to bring down the two perpetrators and strike a damaging blow at the entire industry.
The aforementioned plot could potentially deliver a grim and bloodthirsty heist thriller, but French director Jean-Pierre Jeunet has other intentions. The opening scene in which the little boy Bazil (here played by the young Noé Boon) witnesses his father being blown to pieces amongst the familiar scenery of sandy deserts and Arab costumes, and the following event of Bazil being accidentally shot in the head by a rogue army officer, carry some suspense and sorrow. These serve as a succinct and sufficiently grave acknowledgement of the atrocities of terrorism, yet thankfully Jeunet has the intelligence and frivolity to drop the solemnity at this point, avoiding overstatement of the point and unleashing riches of wonderfully liberating and delightfully unpretentious entertainment.
Bazil's accomplices, or rather, kind and caring companions, are an extremely lovable and splendidly colourful bunch of very uncomplicated characters. Living in a cosy makeshift home, they support each other using their special talents, which range from the remarkable innovation of an expert inventor (a charming Michel Crémadès) to the incredible flexibility of a charismatic contortionist (Julie Ferrier's infectious spunk matches perfectly with Dany Boon's priceless quirks). Their plans to foil the two villains are extremely creative and utterly unexpected, providing most of the film's subtle and beautifully simplistic humour.
Although the film's simplicity does comes at a cost, dragging it far away from Oscar-worthy greatness. It also results in a slight lag in the middle, where its lack of depth truly takes its toll after the initial burst of exuberance momentarily ceases to resonate. However, this barren stretch of reel precedes and is redeemed by the ultimate serving of ingenious wit and hilarity.
All in all a sumptuous treat for everyone, proving just as effective across the language barriers.
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