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My First War (2008)
Platoon in Israel
This is a personal documentary, a video-diary of an Israeli soldier in the second Lebanese war. The director made this war, has served as an officer and felt that he had to testify. He filmed his fellow officers and soldiers, making this movie a true testimony of what Israeli soldiers think, fear, cry for, and hope...or not. Israeli government, the headquarters of Tsahal are hardly pointed out by the soldiers. Horror of war, lack of preparation are the ordinary life of these soldiers. It should be seen before "Waltz with Bashir". That is the sign of the vitality of Israeli civil power, despite the fact that the state could be seen sometimes as a violent state. Many Israeli movies and documentaries have been issued these past years, and are often heartbreaking. Haven't you seen it yet?
Château en Suède (1963)
A weird family game
Frederic, a student, got himself invited by a Swedish family, living in an isolated castle (hence the title: "a castle in Sweden"). The scene takes place in cold winter, the castle being surrounded by snow. Frederic slowly depicts one after another, each member of that strange family: Hugo, the Castle's master, 40 years old, married to Eleanore whom Frederic begins to be attracted to; Sebastien, Eleanore's incestuous and dandy brother; Agathe, Hugo's old fashioned sister; and Ophelie... Who is Ophelie actually? That is one among several mysteries that Frederic will try to solve out. Who is manipulating whom? Frederic's rising love to Eleanore and the truth about the gorgeous Ophelie will lead to unpredictable consequences. An amazing casting and a mysterious Ophelie give birth on the screen to Sagan's play. I personally didn't like the play but I love this movie.
Sexe, gombo et beurre salé (2008)
All life issues in a gombo
The story takes place in the French city of Bordeaux, inside the African community. Sex issues, loneliness, tradition and modernity, interracial relationships, conflict of generations...all these issues are depicted in a humorous manner, as the characters all remain serious. A 70 years old man from Ivory Coast is living with his 45 years old wife who is a nurse, and their 2 youngest child boys. One day, the nurse falls in love with a young white man who is an oyster-farmer in Arcachon and leaves the family apartment. The same day, her husband discovers that their oldest son, who lives in town and works for a car-seller, is gay. Shame! But soon, the gay son is requested by his younger brothers to come and help them because their old father is totally unable to run a house and becomes to drink. Meanwhile, the white neighbor of this family, a 50 years old bachelor woman grasps the opportunity to help and seduce the old African. Other women invade the story: the African sister in law coming right from Ivory Coast and a young and mysterious pregnant girl without a roof on her head. The old fashioned brothers of our 70 years old hero symbolize the African morale. It is a movie but could have been a cartoon, actors and actresses being able to drive a lot of emotions by making wonderful story-telling faces. It's a pity it is only a TV show.
L'ennemi intime (2007)
Just as Vietnam war movies
"Intimate Enemies" could have been strong, provocative, with deep characters. One thing about the main character - a young french volunteer being chief of a platoon near forbidden areas- is that we never know the reasons why he volunteered in a war he dislikes. He is neither a professional soldier -like many who fought in Indochina and volunteered again in Algeria- nor a young called-up for duty. The character of the sergeant who tries to be human in an horrible world is deeper, but is not the main character and the movie is focused on the young one. However, the movie is not very original, but efficient, remembering clichés that are not false, and refreshing memories. I am also glad that French people begin to shoot standard movies about this war, not wonders but common films. It tries to make this subject more popular. The movie called "Mon colonel" was far better and deeper, but may be this one is more a blockbuster type: action, firing - love is missing- and moralizing movie.
Mon colonel (2006)
Torture, history and amnesty
French movies about the "Events", as France called the independence war of Algeria from 1954 to 1962, are not so numerous. This one is clever, well shot (except for the framing) and wonderfully played. Olivier Gourmet is definitely one of my favorites french-speaking actors. First of all, I was cautious about the so many times used trick leading into depicting a past story from a present day perspective. It is very often a fake process intended to draw tears. I do prefer complete past stories, which also make us think about present day's similarities. I am impressed to read on this comments board the comparison made by people from everywhere with Iraq and Afghanistan. Reason Vs. emotion. But this movie is not so badly made regarding this trick. It is also a reflexion about amnesty of war criminals, the relevance of military justice and the constant hypocrisy of french people about Algeria. I regret a bit the part consisting in telling a past story from the reading of a journal written by a young officer, but Cecile de France is so lovely and she is doing well. The telling of the past story analyzes quite well also the differences of views between the army (coming from metropolitan France)and the colonial white community in Algeria. It makes me think that this war could also have resulted in an independence war in a South African or American way, setting-up the colonials free from their homeland, and leading to a segregationist state. There is a lot to think of in this movie. I am surprised that this movie had not been echoed so much. It reminded me of "Honneur d'un capitaine" (the honor of a captain), movie shot by Pierre Schoendoerffer in 1982, also telling about torture.
Black or dark?
Both, I could say. Somme comments on this movie enhanced the "50's movies" style of it, which I agree on, but it is obviously a European movie, without heroes and villains, however we clearly see who is good and who is bad. The only thing is that good is not always simple as it appears to be. Almost every character is very much complex. I only have one doubt about the "traitor"'s character (I do not reveal it, but you know that there is always one or several). We do not have enough comprehensive background about this character. Except from it, all characters are deep...and sound as human nature may be reassuring, capable of doing right AND wrong. Actors are wonderful. I have always loved dutch actors ...and actresses. Dutch people often say that their language is useless as it is only spoken by them. Even thought I do not understand it except when they use words similar to English, it is always a pleasure to hear it as it sounds to be a whistle which sometimes go deep into the throat. I am eager to watch the first WWII movie shot by Verhoeven. I first discovered Sci-Fi Verhoeven's movies, like most people among us. I appreciate his long sight about human nature, and this movie is a very sharp example of it. This movie is also dealing with issues not developed but still there, as the link between stolen gold from the Jewish families and Germans, Israel and south America or any other place where Nazis ere hidden after the war. I just do not know what to think about the last seconds of the movie: the attack of the 1956's war involving Israel, as Israell was one of the aggressors against Egypt, along with UK and France. I have just seen the movie and may need more coolness to think about it. Anyway, go and watch it!!
Could be a successful propaganda
I feel exactly the same as many people about this movie (i.e kind of fascist values, melting defense of the race and civilization, body glorification, and hate over decadent and perverse eastern peoples), but I am wondering about the intent: was it made to condemn that fascism or to glorify it? I preferred to choose the second option, while kind of liking the movie anyway. It is well shot, not too bloody, and much better than epic movies like "the lord of the rings". Sex scenes are very exciting and beautiful, as well as the oracle's scene. I also fear that this version of the Battle of Thermopylae will be kept in the mind of main people to be historical. We do know that Xerxes was not evil and Leonidas was not good. The reality of both aechemenid Persia and Sparta is more complex. Anyway, we must also remind that the story of the Battle of Thermopylae had been written in ancient times to be a glorification to Sparta and Greece, as a propaganda against new enemies and towards a unification of the geek cities. We knew the same with the war of Troy, the battle of Marathon, all Egyptian stories, even the bible's stories were mainly made for strategic and political goals. So, it would not be fool to think that this movie nowadays could be used as a propaganda against Iran and/or an alliance of Turkey with Asian states.
All the King's Men (2006)
Not a remake
I found this movie very interesting in its adaptation of the novel, choosing another topic to enlighten than the one chosen in the 1949 movie. First of all, unlike what is said by several people, I did not feel the "rise and fall" of a politician in this movie. I did not sense a truly hearted and people loving politician becoming corrupted by exercising power. I rather felt a complex character, being both deeply against the upper class and ambitious for itself. The core soul of this story seems to be the moment he discovers that he has been manipulated by the lobbyists in this campaign, not aiming not win, and when he made this marvelous speech denouncing the manipulation. He definitely ran into a populist style which he might have believed in somehow, but was mainly a political strategy. He is human, dual and complex. Corruption might have been always in his veins, even before becoming governor. But the main character is not Willie, it is that young upper class journalist who believes in his mentor and throw out its bounds to his family and class, in order to get free and denounces a dying southern aristocratic society. Just a further word: the last shot of the movie is wonderful. I do not say more as it would be a spoiler.
Marie Antoinette (2006)
A nice tale but not a biography
As a Frenchman, I was really delighted to watch a movie about Marie-Antoinette, coming from outer-Atlantic. We cut her head off, but I notice that she is always fascinating people from the oldest republics in the world: USA and France. The movie is well colored, costumes are marvelous, using rock and roll music is also a good idea. The actors are not bad, especially Mary-Jane Watson in the main part, as Sofia Coppola elected to see Marie -Antoinette as a lost teenager, unadapted to a so much exposed and sumptuous court. What Coppola uses to say is that she was 14 when she came in France. OK, she is right. But to be 14 in the XVIIIth century was very different from now. The "teenagers" was not a concept in itself. At that time, people was either children or adult. And adulthood was earlier than now. Children from the mob used to work very early, and the others were educated to become rulers very soon. Marie-Antoinette was raised to be a princess or a queen, even if protocol at the Austrian court was loser than at the French one. Furthermore, she was not a teenager any more when she became queen, as she was 18. It was the age of maturity at that time. So, she had no excuse for being immature, what she was not any more. That is the only bad thing about this movie. It doesn't say a word about the greatest about: her treachery. She betrayed France by choosing to be Austrian before being queen of France and sent valuable information to her brother (Emperor of Austria) through the Austrian ambassador first, and then through her lover Axel Fersen. Another grief could be her bad advices to her husband who truly loved her (which was quite unusual) and trusted her in politics. One of the explanations of the failure of the monarchy could have been the court system and the Chinese wall between the rulers and the people, but not the age of the Queen. The movie ends at the most interesting period of French history: the beginning of the revolution.
However, this movie is amusing if you do not imagine that it was reality.
Le serpent (2006)
Hollywood on the river Seine
Mainly shot in "La Defense" area of the French capital city, which looks like US cities with its high towers, this movie has been written to be adapted in Hollywood. However, it is not a fake adaptation in French. Barbier did well as he focuses on the deeper feelings of the main 2 characters (may be a more independent movies' style)while opposing them in a face to face combat (just as any good blockbuster). It is a clever movie, very close to psycho-thrillers from Hollywood, starring Michael Douglas or Harisson ford, where the family of the looser-hero is threatened, his life beginning to become in jeopardy thanks to a cold manipulator who is his best nemesis. It is definitely not the same quality as Cape Fear, but contains some of its main elements. Actors Yvan Attal and Pierre Richard fit well the Douglas'suit of this movie, and Cornillac is a quite good Jeroen Krabbe French copy. Do not forget the other actors who perfectly play the "character" type whose purpose is to fulfill their mission, no more no less. Do not forget the pop corn!!
It is a very good anticipation movie. the part describing the lovely and environmental gandahar is wonderful. While renewing a 70's vision of sex, nature and happiness, the colors, sounds and pictures (a young girl offering her breast to a new born invented animal who looks like a tapir, born out of a grown plant). the story: mixing future and past, threatening the present by having itself created in the past, the elements that will be dangerous in the future. It is also a huge criticism of the liability of the human being regarding its evil habit to master the nature, th human body and science. In the end, scientific rubbish save the human beings from a great scientific discovery they made years ago. Happiness is conditioned by assuming one's mistakes. A great philosophical tale. The blue skinned woman with head-wings is very impressive, as well as the very beautiful nude females.
Elizabeth I (2005)
I was mostly frustrated with the recent movie with Cate Blanchett starring the virgin queen, the most popular of all British monarchs. Before that, I saw many actresses playing it, but many times like the icon it used to be. The Helen Mirren's acting is personal, balanced and believable. Far better than "Chief of command" , the recent US TV series with a president woman . One of the great movies depicting that historical time, pointed out the other queen, Mary of the Scots, played by the fabulous Vanessa Redgrave. But of Elisabeth I, no great movie...until this TV show. As I am French (nobody's perfect), I found hard not to be able to watch this movie, and ordered it from the web. I truly hope that my fellow citizens will be able to watch it widely one day. But may be they are not as fond of British history as I am.The French movie depicting Queen Margot's life, during the same historical time, was a huge success too. Whatever the story, everybody loves great, smooth, so personal historical movies. God save good movies.
Les patriotes (1994)
Uncredited top 10 world spy movie
When I first watched it, in 1994, in a small french city movie theatre, I shouted: "F...! What a movie!". But days, weeks and months after, no one seemed to think like me. The critics I read were all bad (Then I started to cancel my subscription to a famous french movie magazine)and condemned this movie to death. However, I had seen it three times on screen. This movie is for me of the same blood as the spy movies from the 70's, where spies were not heroes any more, but particles of giant machines, and desperate men, seeing other people apart. "The days of the Condor", "Scorpio", "la 7eme cible" etc. were that kind of movies. with "Les Patriotes", Eric Rochant took his time (24 weeks of shooting)and his producers hired a tough cast (Richard Masur, Nancy Allen, Yossi Banai)to support local actors and a wonderful Yvan Attal who acted perfectly the young, experienceless, and tormented french Jewish spy who went to Israel by love in order to serve and protect his new home. But unfortunately, dreams are not reality... and protecting a country is not as rewarding as it seemed in James Bond movies. This movie is also worth to be seen because of the interest of Israel's concerns, the realistic (and dispassionate) way it is depicted. But the main topic is neither Israel, nor the Mossad, but being a spy and doing wrong to make good.
El 7º día (2004)
A Spanish drama
"God created life within 6 days, and on the seventh, he rested. That is why horrible things usually happens on sundays". This quote summarizes both the story, the mood of the movie, and a way, the Spanish way of life/death. As Death is part of life, in Spain. Sangre, Sexo y Muerte (blood, sex and death)make life in that country. We use to figure out that among Greece's daughters, Italy is Comedy while Spain is Drama. Sobre drama, compared to Greek dramas. Saura paints this mood perfectly. We all know from the beginning what will happen. Besides, we are all surprised when "It" happens, but it is not more violent or chocking than other parts of the movie. "In a small village, everybody knows each other. While each one is different, each one is the same anyway." Meaning that a small village lives like bees, without any queen. Sun is burning hearts, souls, camps, farms and reason. From the first violently ended lovestory to the final massacre, through claims on land terminated with knives, global ressent and despair, moquery from a whole village, this movie is about the life of a family of two old couples, avenging from the entire village they were obliged to leave long ago, but they stayed close to it. They are not totally victims, as one member of their family (or "clan") murdered the brother of a family man, the butcher, and tried to murder the brother as well. The latter is father of 3 young girls, one of which is falling in love with a young guy (the "moto-guy" of the village), who finally leaves the village to leave its life. All the story is seen though the eyes of that young girl.
National Treasure (2004)
waste of talent but not of money
It is one of these blockbusters made to be efficient and earn money. Cage has his typical blockbusters-noemotionnormoving-face and acting. Sean Bean is in it (I should hae be warned, I do not know any good movie with Bean in it), as well as Jon Voight,who is not really acting but only appearing from "MI 1" (as he had reluctantly shot movies that did not deserved his talent). On the other side,Christopher Plummer and Harvey Keitel (as good as usual) do waste their talents while playing supporting roles. Diane Kruger is delightful, and the young hero's best friend is doing his best (which is not so bad). The story is funny, but above all, the way it is screen-played is pathetic: Dear studios, please fire your popcorn-writers and hire real ones! The result is a pale copy of "Indiana Jones" movies. What makes the movie watchable when you want to empty your mind, is the slight humor in it (and Diane Kruger's beautiful...eyes and...smile).
However, the underlying references are interesting, enlightening the free masons' role in the building of the free US and their values (together with the pilgrim fathers and protestants), from the declaration of independence to the mason symbol on USD bills.
Match Point (2005)
Almost a masterpiece
I am an Allen's fan, and I love his movies when they are truly amazing, as some of them are (the list should be long). However, besides that, he has always made small entertaining quickly-shot movies that I like much less, but that would be good enough if not directed by Allen. He did a couple of such kind of movies recently.
"Match Point" does not it either category. It is shot as a "genre" film, which Allen loves to do, shot and taken place in Britain, as an Ivory movie, underlying the inside perversity of British high society. The story is full of questions, the actors are tremendous, but... I am disappointed! Why? I did know at first sight. I believe that the movie is challenging, and that Allen did not achieved his goal. Nola's character is finally not deep enough, despise the great talent of Scarlett Johansson. She even get us hoping more about the depth and tragedy of her character. Unfortunately, she does not appear to be such a fatal woman as she is supposed to be one, because of her appearing sensibility.She really loves Chris. And the scenario treats her character as a supporting one, explaining Chris'choices. Chris as well, did not succeed in being a tormented person, choosing deliberately to have a classical and healthy life, even if it is fake. The moment of the choice and the final ending are too quick. Only the ghosts of 2 dead women are there to suggest the terrible inside dilemma and guiltiness. The British actors (devonian, londoner and Scottish ones)are perfect in their supporting roles. I guess it is not the fault of the actors. It simply does not work, after having been mostly promising. That is a pity!!
La pomme de Newton (2005)
Sweet and sad
this TV movie has been made like Robert Altman's "Short cuts". It deals with cross livings of three women (young adult, adult and old woman) who works together in a cafeteria, telling their respective stories in front of a fourth character, a man who acts as a witness of their lives and their questionning about mother-daughter relationships. A young black girl living with her mother and the new husband of the latter, a white man, is questionning about her own love affair and her roots, wishing to go and find her "true" father whom she never knew. Like most teenagers (she is an old one:18)she blaims her own mother with everything, judging her very badly, and rejecting her father in law who is a very kind and sympathetic guy. She says :"you do not have to love your mother; it is not genetical". Finally, her mother joins her in her quest to fin her true father...what will be a total disappointment. Second story: an old woman suffered a dilemma, when she was young, between her boyfriend who lived at the other side of the world, and her new born baby girl. She decided, although it was heartbreaking, to abandon her child. Many years later, she finds her as the owner of an antiques shop. She plays the customer, tell her nothing, but socializes a bit and becomes to be hired as a housekeeper and helps her daughter dealing with her children, the cooking etc... She then falls in love with her daughter. the end of the story needs to be discovered as such. I won't tell it. The third girl, the adult one, goes back to her family home, discovers her mother being badly psychologically treated by her father, who says nothing, is selfish (sleeps alone and send his wife sleeping in the sofa, because she awakes him while moving in the bed during the night). Her mother has no self personality left, and looks like a zombie, not rebelling. The daughter then leads her mother's destiny, leaves the house with her, try to help her recover her self interest. It works, as the mother meets a new lover...
All these stories are told in an amused way, both pathetic and funny. Very good, but not very knon actors complete the painting.
The Beast of War (1988)
A hidden marvel
I missed it on Theater's screen, 'cause the title. The Beast of War is definitely not another war B series movie, nor a sequel of Rambo III. How to be less manichean than this movie? It's a wonderful tale about war, the men who do them (a fanatic old tanker wonderfully played by George Dzundza, the intellectual Jason Patric, the dumb one and the coward one), good and evil on each side and intelligence. Even the evil ones are complex people. Its also a formidable incarnation of the sole monster in this story: the Beast aka the Tank. The tank symbolizes war: violent, lost, both powerful and beatable, limited in action. Descripting the Russian occupation of Afghanistan, it would also fit to every modern occupation wars: Irak, Vietnam, etc... The cultural gap and the ways to cross it (though the smart friendship between Jason Patrick and the Afghani chief played by Steven Bauer) are lessons for every one. It should have been watched by the Pentagon before the recent Afghani and Iraqi wars. A deep analysis of the roots of the red army's glory from Stalingrad and the related nostalgia, is perfectly made here.
I was surprised as well by Kevin Reynold's work (far from waterworld), by the musical theme, and the shots of this movie.
Dzundza ("Tank boy")should have won an Oscar for his interpretation of this villain, victim of war and sticked to his tank.
Rencontre avec le dragon (2003)
A rare love story
Go and watch this movie if you like beautiful pictures including landscapes of high mountains, beaches and sandy moors, but also incredibly realistic sets of castles, dark forest, and the salesbrokes and wardrobes of all characters.
You really make a time travel to the middle ages, in France. People are violent,sad and severe, not very talkative.
Legends are part of domestic life and are not separate from reality, unsafety surrounds each one, and fantasy is real(for example: the nightly transformation into a boar, of a widow knight).
Inside this universe, deep characters are painted by magnificent actors: Auteuil, Melki, Emmanuelle Devos and Maurice Garrel. They evolve into 2 dramatic love stories: Guillaume de Montauban, a famous and daring former crusader, is tormented by the fire burning through his body since he was young and saved his best friend from a forest burning. This fire granted him with a formidable strength (the strength of the Dragon) as well as the nickname "the Red Dragon", fearless, heartless and banned from death. He is also tormented by a sin he committed towards his best friend and the latter's wife whom he was in love too, and slayed. Guillaume will be followed by his squire,a young orphan idealizing the Dragon, and his former best friend, who is now a wild man, becoming a boar each night and an amnesic man each morning. The second drama is the mission given by the Pope to Guillaume: chasing a young poet being the pope's favourite who escaped from him to join his bride, a chief-nun. Guillaume has an adversary in this mission, a young and brutal Knight trying to kill him.
Do not think about any action or adventure film, even if you have some in it, but rather of a drama.
I am willing to watch more movies directed by Hélène Angel.
The Aviator (2004)
Could have been a wonder
This movie could have been a wonder if the main character had been portrayed by anybody else but Di Caprio. I have to confess that I appreciate Mister Caprio's efforts to fit the great and complex character, but its not enough, obviously. He does not succeed in making us forget leonardo and see Howard. The womanizer Hughes was not present at all: Leonardo is shy and appears as such. The "Lolita" scenes with the 15 years old actress is not believable. seduction and Bluff parts of Hughes' personality were not there. Good rates: Alan Alda, mean and corrupted ; Kate Blanchett as Kate Hepburn: wonderful!; John C.Reilly: good as usual in a supporting role; the story. Other bad rates: the coloring choices: interesting but not always relevant (ex: the golf party between Hughes and hepburn).
Please watch it anyway, it's worth it, but it could have been a great movie. Robert Downey Jr did well in "Chaplin" what Leonardo Di Caprio fails here. But it was not an easy challenge. Congatulations anyway for your real efforts, Leonardo.
a typical pessimistic sci/fi movie
Unlike Mad Max, we do not much about any apocalyptic event occurred before the time of the story which takes place in a near future. A strong government is ruling, rogue-military and police are keeping peace, borders are close and secured, and above all, no game is allowed. "Game leads to thinking, and thinking to rebellion". On the other side, an underground mad scientist called "Sir" (Jurgen Prochnow, excellent as usual)is trying to perform cloning experimentations and cybernetic enhancement of the human brain, by helping his own clone (called "Doctor") to create two children whose brain has been upgraded and own will annihilated. The boy "Mati" is the last product of the "Doctor". In order to test him, "Sir" has organized a forbidden game which consists of a truck race across forbidden areas and borders, to reach the "Terminus", i.e the hidden base of the "Doctor". In fact, "Sir"'s purpose is to create an army of young devoted and intelligent fellows in order to take power over the government. Leading the truck race, Mati has created a new era of a computer, "Monster", integrated to a truck driven by Gus, a female truck driver. Somehow, "Monster" experiments failures which do not appear to be purposeless.
Relationships between the two drivers and "Monster", Mati, an orphan girl met in a prison camp, are the heart of the story, and their hope and faith in freethinking, love and protection of the most defenseless ones, is considered to be the main danger for both the government and "Sir".
This movie is dealing with a chase, a race, manipulations and strange hope.
The cinematography is very unusual, the Grey/green/red colors remind the visual universe of sci/fi comics. You need to enter this very personal environment to be delighted in watching this movie.
I remember I was astonished as a teenager, seeing this movie in theaters, long ago.
Karen Allen, Johnny Halyday and Jurgen Prochnow, as well as "Monster" performed this unusual movie as if they were part of Glenn's universe and bad dreams.
not famous but fabulous
One of my 3 favorite movies of all times (with "Z" and "Dr Strangelove"). It is unfortunately not very famous. I still do not understand why. from the nationalist point of view, it describes (i) the social background of the Spanish society in the upper military and nobility class; (ii) the psychological ground of any war, (iii) both the humanity, the embitterness, the cynicism of any executioner. It is also a story, written through a teenager's eyes, called back by his father from France where he was studying, to a torn Spain between an old fashioned aristocracy and church and the people looking for democracy.He sees the calm horror of an execution camp, a sort of a training wanted by his father before sending him to the front, in order to cancel all remaining humanity in his soul. It is a prerequisite to stand the horrors of war. He is protected by his father's old friend, who is played by Jean-Louis Trintignan, a romantic story in himself.
Please try to see this movie: it is quite difficult in fact. I hoped that the DVD edition would be a rebirth to this movie, but I doubt it. It is a shame that masterpieces are not recognized for their real value. "Land and Freedom", which was released at the same time, benefited from a better mediatic cover.
Could have been a good movie
A french gangsters movie. It has all the needed elements for a good gangster movie: sharp characters (Daniel Duval and Gerald Laroche fit perfectly the character's part they have to play), a romance, a young gangster, enemies etc...
The main lack of this movie is the rhythm: we do not have any. As a consequence (or a revealer), the soundtrack is not interesting. The complete cut should be remade, shortened.
Tough guys are there, but that's all. A good try, but a complete failure. That's a pity. I hope may be, Durringer will learn and make a good gangster movie with a french touch.
Watch Olivier Marshal's movies if you want to see a real french and recent gangster movie.
Cent mille dollars au soleil (1964)
a typical french story about nice small bandits in north Africa
Southern Morocco, 1963. The owner of a truck transports company hires a new driver (a self-called American tough guy) to transport mysterious goods in a brand new magnificent truck. While the established group of drivers of the company is welcoming the new driver, one of them (played by Jean-Paul Belmondo)hijack the mysterious truck on the day after, planning to negotiate the sale of goods for its own profit and fly over with his new young bride. The best driver of the company (played by Lino Ventura)is launched to his young fellow's pursuit. On his way, the new American driver joins him to eventually face the young "thief". The pursuit through the Moroccan "Atlas" is rich of surprises about each one, in a world where no one asks more than he has to know.
About all, friendship is always victorious, even if "Friends always share fight, problems, hunger an women, but never money when it is worth 100 000 dollars", as Jean-Paul Belmondo says.
a real jambalaya mix
A former comment spoke about a jambalaya about this movie, and I think it summarizes well this UFO (Unidentified Filmed Object). The acting is wonderful and it holds the entire movie: Marielle, Flemyng, Paradis, Poolevoerde, Venantino Venantini (unexpected in this part)and also Bouli Flanners(the fat chip cop)and all the third knives of this drama. From the funny-sex-gore movies lovers, It will be very delightful. Even if some shots switching from one genre to the other (from the Belgian-french surreal movie to the Italian Z to the US Cajun gore wonder through the Spanish funny and colored fantasy) inside the same movie are not perfect and need several seconds of adaptation, this masterpiece of nonsense needs to be seen at least once, twice etc...
finally, the shooting is perfect and unexpected.
Enjoy your watching this...thing.