The Secret Adventures of Gustave Klopp (2004) Poster

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Too funny to sleep through.
TashC18 September 2006
Gustave Klopp does a lot of dreaming. Born with an incurable "design flaw" (narcolepsy), stress causes him to fall fast asleep. So, understandably, he sleeps through most of school, being a teenager, dating, marrying, numerous jobs and having a mortgage.

But his sickness finally provides meaning to his life when he starts turning his dreams (heavily influenced by his father's love of American action movies) into comic books. His therapy group of misfits love his stories, but his therapist, his wife and his best friend all have ulterior motives and Gustave has to wake up to reality, or lose everything.

The film is quirky, funny and populated with eccentric characters with big dreams and thwarted ambitions. A surreal comedy that is also poignant and cruel.
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Poelvorde pushes the film to the top
Surfeurfou4 March 2006
(Sorry about my English dude i am french)I would hesitate between 7 and 8 mark. but does it matter ? The film is a highly emotional ballad through ordinary lifes. Poelvorde is a truly good actor to me : he has the ability to play ordinary guy but he transform them into heroes! the emotion he can bring to his scenes is terrific. The man has a true quality for generating emotion on screen. The scenes with Jean-Claude Van Dame is beautiful, even though this actor is sometimes laugh at, he appears as an angel in this film. Leny the worldwide karateka champion needs this icon to find a sens to his life. Some people think this is bulls*** : i say one should never laugh at the power of a dream or an idea when it is really the sens of someone life ! I advise you to watch this film if you are not a "mainstream only" !
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Hilarious ambitious and crazy movie looking like no other...
Roublardise15 July 2006
After Atomik Circus, the hyperactive Belgian Benoît Poelvoorde is yet again jumping with young directors and writers in a crazy movie with lots of pace, plenty of ideas and references, a lot of humor (JC Van Damme laughing at the image of himself that was built and then that has spread to all french-speakers in the world after several interviews and comments he made when on drugs again and again, several crazy TV appearances saying stupid things absurd semi-philosophical metaphorical sentences in a very pedantic tone while they meant nothing because he was stoned etc...) and some critics made about current society with wit, discretely etc...He succeeds at making his crazily pathetic character very touching and above all hilarious as always...

Fantastic cast : Guillaume Canet, Zabou Breitman (= two directors ), Benoît Poelvoorde as Lenny Bar (there is a game of words with this name in French so that when you pronounce his character's surname + last name it sounds as if you've said : "the boobs"...Stupid right now but funny during some scenes in the movie...LOL!), Guillaume Gallienne of the "Comédie Française" (from 'Monsieur Ibrahim' which won a prize at the Mostra de Venezia with Omar Sharif and introducing Pierre Boulanger...), a small but very funny part for Gilles Lellouche's girl Mélanie Doutey as a girl who only sees half of things, a funny part for Lellouche himself as one of the bounty hunters/ice-skaters twins next to Léa Drucker (who has played in each of Aurouet & Lellouche's two short-films...), François Berléand is good in this kind of cynical roles as always, Jean-Pierre Cassel (yep, Vincent and Cécile's father...) is coming back stronger than ever with both this movie and the great but under-rated "Virgil" in which he was even better...etc...

Oh and don't blink to catch Guillaume Canet's 6 years wife at the time (they're not together anymore) make a small kind of cameo appearance as a nightclubber at some point in the movie...LOL

Just go see it!
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Poelvoorde's search in mediocrity
paulo1b17 December 2004
Don't misunderstand me. I liked the movie.

At first I was disappointed. I was mostly examining the flaws in the acting , the poverty of dialogues etc. And then, I don't know how, I was enjoying the film very much.

The way I see it, Poelvoorde's evolution in cinema is always aiming to get closer and closer to the poor simple guy, struggling to get a sense to his life. In that one we have three. Two are best friends, the third is Gus' wife. I won't spoil the story since I think it deserves to be seen, but they managed to give a true picture of very particular yet totally second-rate lives.

Despite the apparent poverty of the situation (except in Gus' dreams), there's a lot going on, many clichés and references to Tarantino's movie making as well. And Van Damme is perfect: a counsellor for a dumb clueless guy who thinks he's the best karateka in the world. I think he's got his place there too.

Pretty hard to get a clear opinion on this, there's a lot of mixed messages ... Once again I won't recommend it for people used to mainstream movies.

I gave it 8 out of 10
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"Le vrai karaté c'est le karaté qui vient du coeur...Le vrai karaté c'est 'Double Impact.' "
zievereir30 July 2017
Everything about the first half is funny and seems nicely thought out. Somehow the second half seems to slow down.

Poelvoorde's character is almost always (happily) Poelvoorde doing Poelvoorde. In French cinema he is just very idiosyncratic and so must play the part of the Belgian "grande geule" more than just a couple of times. But this film is not just him alone. There are some great scenes and ideas and characters. The adorable Guillaume Gallienne plays the psychologist, Pupkin, who has ambitions to be the greatest cartoonist alongside Uderzo & Goscinny, Franquin, and Hergé. François Berléand ('Au Revoir les Enfants'), the beautiful Zabou Breitman and Guillaume Canet are all very good.

The fantastic dream sequences, and the suburban setting with its faceless hypermarket, amusements, and bars are very somewhere nowhere USA. The mustard and ketchup in plastic vessels on the table almost cements the suspicion that this a misguided attempt to make this feel American, or even to be an American style blockbuster, but its too French (and Poelvoorde too Belgian.)

The tank hatch opening ("Eh-oh!"), the sibling assassins arrival, the '80s discos, and the psychologists' patients are among some great scenes here. But Poelvoorde steals the show. The Jean Claude conversation, and his public karate show performance is exceeded only by the outstanding karate school lesson with hangover victim and child.

It's a good film with a lot of humour, although it dwindles a little by the end.
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