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The Fall of the American Empire (2018)

La chute de l'empire américain (original title)
R | | Comedy, Crime | 31 May 2019 (USA)
Trailer
1:59 | Trailer
A shy and insecure delivery truck driver accidentally arrives on the scene of a major crime and picks up two bags of cash and hide them. Only the help of a prostitute and a former biker released from jail might get him out of trouble.

Director:

Denys Arcand

Writer:

Denys Arcand
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Maxim Roy ... Carla McDuff
Maripier Morin ... Aspasie / Camille Lafontaine
Juliette Gosselin ... La femme médecin résidente
Vincent Leclerc ... Jean-Claude
Rose-Marie Perreault ... Natasha
Éric Bruneau ... L'enquêteur Plamondon
Rémy Girard ... Sylvain 'The Brain' Bigras
Alain Goulem ... Sean Harrington (as Al Goulem)
Alexandre Landry ... Pierre-Paul Daoust
Claude Legault ... L'informateur de la police
Florence Longpré ... Linda Demers
Yan England ... Jimmy
Ayana O'Shun ... Madame Rosabert - la mère de Jacmel
Louis Morissette ... Pete La Bauve
Pierre Curzi ... Maître Wilbrod Taschereau
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Storyline

A shy and insecure delivery truck driver accidentally arrives on the scene of a major crime and happens to pick up two bags of cash and hide them in his truck. As if an interrogation of two tough police detectives isn't enough, the guy, who has a doctor's degree in philosophy which makes his mind mingle with remorse, must find a way to get rid of this dirty money. Only the help of a prostitute and a former biker released from jail might get him out of trouble, especially that a gang leader is very eager to get his cash back, or kill whoever is responsible for this mess. However, even the two bumbling detectives are monitoring the case as well. Written by RealLiveClaude

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Crime

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some strong violence, sexual content/nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Maripier Morin's husband, former hockey player Brandon Prust, has a small role in this movie as a waiter. See more »

Goofs

Thete is no way a gangster who was in prison for money laundering or similar crimes would ever be allowed to take college courses in Business Finance. See more »

User Reviews

 
stealing from criminals
21 June 2019 | by ferguson-6See all my reviews

French-Canadian filmmaker Denys Arcand won the Best Foreign Language Oscar for THE BARBARIAN INVASIONS (2003), and has gained a very loyal group of followers for his films. It should be noted that, despite the title, this is not a sequel or prequel to Arcand's 1986 film THE DECLINE OF THE AMERICAN EMPIRE. This one is a comedy-crime drama that is as cynical as it is witty, and perhaps as much social commentary as satire. It's yet another rip on capitalism while showing that idealism can work wonders (at least if it's well funded). "Intelligence is a handicap." That's what Pierre-Paul Daoust (played by Alexandre Landry) tells his girlfriend as he breaks up with her in a café. When she points out that he's a delivery driver (similar to UPS), Pierre-Paul riffs on a number of famous writers and philosophers who he claims were dumb as rocks. Her inquiry into Trump being elected President leads to his conclusion, "imbeciles worship cretins". He is the kind of guy that has an answer for everything, and possesses a type of oratory expertise that makes his excuses sound like scientific explanations.

One day while on his route, he stumbles into a robbery gone way wrong. Two thieves were in the process of stealing gang/mob money (and lots of it) when a shooting broke out. In the immediate aftermath, Pierre-Paul makes the snap decision to toss the two huge bags of cash into the back of his deliver truck and take off. This kicks off a chain of events that includes his crossing paths with Aspasie/Camille (Maripier Morin) a high dollar escort whose website features a quote from "Racine". Pierre-Paul is a Ph.D. in Philosophy, so he takes this as a sign.

Shortly after, Pierre-Paul is meeting with Sylvain "the brain" (Arcand regular Remy Girard), a recently released from prison biker who has become an expert on money laundering. The three form an odd partnership and are followed wherever they go by a couple of police detectives. Camille introduces Sylvain and Pierre-Paul to Mr. Taschereau (Pierre Curzi), her dapper former lover who also happens to be the foremost authority on international tax evasion and high finance.

The running joke here is that Pierre-Paul is an upright citizen who has never done anything remotely illegal in his life. In fact, he regularly doles out money to Quebec's homeless and those down on their luck. He also volunteers regularly at a shelter that feeds those in need. The obvious statement here is pointing out the great divide between the wealthy and the poor.

Arcand's film is close to being very good, but falls short in too many areas to reach the height it desires. There is a torture scene that seems totally out of place compared to the tone of the rest of the film, and I refuse to make the link to PRETTY WOMAN - another film where the rich guy wins over the good-hearted sex worker. This film talks about "providence" and just rewards that rarely happen. Is it acceptable to do the wrong thing for the right reasons? Does doing good correct a wrong? Heck, is it even wrong to steal from criminals? What the film actually does is serve up obvious targets with no real solutions offered. The self-congratulatory ending with close-up shots of Quebec's homeless doesn't help.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Canada

Language:

French | English | Latin

Release Date:

31 May 2019 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Fall of the American Empire See more »

Filming Locations:

Montréal, Québec, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$338,216, 1 July 2018

Gross USA:

$2,178,460

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$4,110,928
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cinémaginaire Inc. See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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