Gabrielle (2005)
You CAN Go Home Again (But I Wouldn't Bother)
22 October 2005
Pascal Greggory has it made - on paper, at least. A town house only marginally smaller than the Musee d'Orsay, complete with a full complement of servants - a lifestyle in fact that it seems only Prince Charles aspires to today - and last but not least a trophy wife in the shape of Isabelle Huppert. Ah, there's the rub, as someone once said because picture his chagrin when he comes home one evening after a hard day's flaneuring to find a note in his wife's unmistakable hand to the effect that she's had it up to here and has taken it on the Jesse Owens with a lover about whom until now she has been so discreet it isn't true. But this is only the beginning for hardly has the ink had time to dry on the letter than she is back again and this is where the story really starts given that the bulk of the movie is the exploration of this angle at length. Pascal Greggory makes a convincing heavy - he was last seen at it in the latest remake of Arsene Lupin - and though he is ostensibly the victim and wronged party here he still manages to play it like a villain. I can't honestly claim to be a fan of Chereau and nothing in this effort really changes my mind but I am a fan of Isabelle Huppert and she obliges with her usual fine performance in the second film in a row (after Les Souers Fachees) in what will, we hope, turn out to be her new sleaze-free choice of roles.
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