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French filmmaker René Vidal was once a renowned director, but most see his career on a quick downward slide based on his last several films. In Paris, he is just starting to film his latest movie, a remake of Les vampires (1915), and has hired Hong Kong based Chinese actress Maggie Cheung as the title lead, "Irma Vep" (an anagram for "vampire"), despite she knowing no French and she not being an obvious choice to most. Maggie has never worked with Vidal before and knows little about his movies, but many of his primarily French crew are part of his regular stable. As such, Maggie may become isolated among the cast and crew, unless there are those who bring her into their English conversations, they who may have somewhat ulterior motives in doing so. There are also factions within the cast and crew, who, based on their history, have a poisoned sense of what is going on. With Vidal, he is dealing with some personal issues while he tries to regain his film making form. He may transfer his...Written by
I just watched Irma Vep last night. And I have to say that I enjoyed watching this movie for many reasons. Evidently Maggie is one of the reasons. Beautiful of course and good actress to boot. But beyond that, we have a lot of other things that kept my interest alive all along. This movie presents a self examination of French movie making, thereby justifying the accusation of "nombrilisme" (narcissism) by the reporter interviewing Maggy. This seems to be one of the themes here. A close look at the movie making process in France where a certain lack of coordination seems to be the rule, where a director launches the movie making only based on a whim. And in this case, it's the idea of having Maggie Cheung play the main role of a character in a remake of a 1915 silent movie. What really becomes interesting is the way she gets into the role and really becomes Irma. But I will leave you to discover how and when. At any rate, the movie has the funny effect to make you wonder if French movie making is in that bad a state that it can come up with such an interesting product.
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