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4/10
Boring comedy
20 May 2002
The problem with witty comedies is when they never manage to make you laugh and think. Jojo La Frite would like to be witty, but whenever it tries, it just fails. The film lacks psychology as the characters are dull caricatures and is never enjoyable as its humour bombs. The situation are as vacuous and pointless as the characters. A boring and shallow comedy.
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5/10
Smoking or not smoking?
24 February 2002
The film's main character is fed up with his dreary life, that's why he decides to give up everything, his wife, kids and his job for a few weeks away during which he'll be able to smoke and drink to forget his condition and finds himself again.

He claims his right for smoking after such a long time of deprivation. Smoking becomes an act of rebellion and numerous are the characters who act that way. Quite funny. The whole film is a comedy as most of the cast is singular and absolutely ludicrous.

But what could have been a nice film becomes more or less wasted by the director unability to give substance to his characters whom he forgets without any reason. What happens to the main protagonist's wife and kids for almost an hour is just a mystery. Frustrating and needless as they first appeared as leading parts.

And the direction is so primary and limited!

Why does that film last two hour is another mystery as it finally brings us nothing upsetting, except a few really funny moments.
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Lalka (1968)
10/10
A fascinating adaptation of a literature classic book.
23 February 2002
Wojciech Has is probably one of the most mesmerizing directors ever. He's one of these rare directors who manage to make the viewers forget their accounts just by depicting the most beautiful scenes.

Unfortunately he has grown out of fashion and has sadly been forgotten by everyone. Unfair. And yet, his films are among the wealthiest filmic pieces of art. They are built with words and pictures. They are a literary works with words borrowed from the books the Polish director adapted. They are obviously visual with loaded and ornate shots full of incredible details which are reminiscent of gothic art and surrealism.

THe Doll is more linear and more accessible than most of Has's movies, but it's in no way a betrayal of what he has done before. Has manages to make this conventional piece of literature a film coherent to his work as he included his dearest themes among which the theme of travel, spiritual and of course physical travels and the morbid theme of decay here through the slow agony of the aristocracy.

This is of course a must-see film, a genuine masterpiece. Its two and a half hour length shouldn't repel you. And if you like this touching and gruesome trip, get ready for his next film, The Sand-Glass, simply his best film and the most incredible spiritual journey you'll ever have in your life.
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8/10
Surprisingly moving
23 January 2002
This is quite a good film about the close bonds uniting an excentric and ill mother with her two children. The cast is absolutely brilliant as each actor manages to convey a panel of personal emotions. Pisier, at the same time director and actress, doesn't content herself with depicting flat characters as they all have their ambiguity and that's probably the strength of the film.

The film is about love and family, which may seem a little bit trite and commonplace, and yet the director's honesty is absolutely convincing.

I mustnot forget the lovely music which right from the opening credits rocks the viewer. This is a nice surprise.
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9/10
a magnificent bird tale
5 January 2002
Pure magic! I wasn't very keen on seeing this documentary after the rather boring Micocosmos, but Le Peuple Migrateur did what few movies did, it just upset me. As a documentary I expected a rather flat direction, and yet I discovered a lofty direction full of dizzy and breathtaking shots, a cinematic direction which takes us far from man's world. The music accompanying it is touching and makes us humble faced to the beauty of what we see and hear. I was stunned all along this 1 hour 45 movie. All the birds looked unimpressed by man's presence, as if they had been tamed. Thanks to technology, Jacques Perrin fulfilled his dream, he travelled along with the birds and shared moments of real intimacy with these animals. Emotion at its best. Le peuple migrateur was the second highest budget for a French film in 2001, it was a risky bet and it is a successful one, as it is more than an animal documentary, it is a real film d'auteur. These animals' fates sometimes cross man's road. Foolish and cruel hunting, pollution, globalization, life and death as a result... Impossible not to think of human condition and of the way we change and influence the world around us while watching this work. Impressive.
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Outlaws (1985)
7/10
French youth in the eighties, violence, rebellion and psychology
18 December 2001
Those who know current French society and the effects of hooliganism and gangs in cities will find for sure this film a little bit obsolete. And yet it perfectly reflects how uneasy kids were then and how naive adults were face to the rise of juvenile delinquency. Most of Hors La loi takes place in out of time villages or in the far away country, far from the madding crowd... And yet, violence is at the center of the topic. The film depicts the absurd and unavoidable runaway of a group of kids trying to escape adults' incomprehension. The gap between the innocent adolescents and the unaware adults is wide and grows even wider as the teenagers are losing their innocence. They get involved in murder (self defense actually) and the whole (French) world is tracking them down. Robin Davis, the director, likes his kids a lot, understanding their social and psychological plight. He shoots them seeking a forsaken and uninhabited village, a myth, a legend as the globalization would catch these teenagers back to make them even more violent and dangerous in the nineties. Despite its big budget and very good reviews, Hors la loi was a massive flop in France. The audience wasn't ready to accept the social disturbance implied by the screenplay. After all La Boum with Sophie Marceau and its party of gleeful kids wasn't very far behind and comedies are always more entertaining than social dramas. That's life, and life is far from being wonderful, believe me!
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4/10
Boring father, boring daughter
17 October 2001
This tiny little film exists on the big screen just because of its cast (the convincing natacha Reignier and françois Berléand). Apart from them, the film is just hollow and empty. A bad direction which looks like a TV film's direction, intrusive mikes, a foolish editing and so tepid a story! The topic (the dark relationships between a daughter and her absent father) has been tackled so many times in the last few years in France. Here nothing prepares us to the tragic ending which is meant to grip us out of sleep before the end credits. The story is banal, trite and lacks a good screenwriter. The father's jacket which is found again 15 years later in the father's closet to confirm the relationship between them is a stupid pretext. Sometimes there are movies which should not be made. This one is one of those and it will rapidly disappear from the Earth's surface as if it had never existed. How fair!
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7/10
Witty and funny
29 August 2001
This is a French remake of the fabulous eponymous British TV series. The adaptation is successful as the director and the cast never betray the spirit of the TV hit. Aghion, the director, has chosen gags from various episodes and has gathered them together in a coherent screenplay. It looks an extended version of an episode of the series. It doesn't bring anything new for the fans of ab fab. With this movie adaptation, the director's aim is to reach a wider audience (we have to keep in mind that the British series is cult in France, but not really famous). Fortunately, the film is as trash as on TV, and therefore really funny. Balasko and Baye perfectly embody the 2 demented alcoholic fashion victims and as far as I am concerned, I kept laughing from the beginning till the end. Not fabulous, but close to.
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4/10
A comedy with a dubious ideology
4 August 2001
That is an unpleasant film. It's misogynous (poor women, not a movie for her, they are just treated as a good dish to savour once only!), homophobic (dirty jokes about homosexuals and especially the gay beating up are inacceptable)and Manichean as at the end the bourgeoisie embodied by Dutronc betrays the lower class... That's simplistic, shallow and pretentious. Oh yes, I was forgetting, that's just a dumb film!
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7/10
funny French comedy which never lacks gags
3 August 2001
This film had a big budget, but was a major flop in France. The reviews were so bad and the actors were overacting... In addition the movie poster was as ugly as the trailer, so nobody gave it a try. And yet this comedy turned out to be a big surprise to me. It really is funny from the beginning to its ending.The dialogues are well written, witty and always amusing. it's got a supermarket scene to die for, during which a snobbish and practicing woman is faced with the making of a saucy music video... The actors seem to have had great fun making the film, and they easily communicate their humour. Really pity it was such a flop.
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7/10
Hilarious sea holiday!
10 July 2001
Let's forget 15 Aout which was released a few months ago. Here is another sea holiday comedy, but a much better one. Even though there's nothing original to revel in here, the depiction of this middle-class French family is so accurate that it becomes funny! Anybody can recognize a situation he has already lived. A god mirror to our lives and therefore as we poke fun of the awkward patriarch, we make fun of something not that far from what we have already lived or maybe of what we are in a certain way. Really funny.
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4/10
A stupid French comedy
19 June 2001
H.S is a boring and foolish comedy which tries to be politically incorrect, but which never manages to make the most of dark humor. It's just flat and dumb. The hit men assassinate without any compassion. It's just cold and wanton, which is quite disturbing for a film that's supposed to be funny. A real turkey!
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Devil Story (1986)
1/10
a nonsensical z movie which offers a great laugh
16 June 2001
That's French (it takes place in the French countryside)and that's a horror film, so it is accordingly a real turkey. And this one is incredibly bad: it gathers devilish animals, a monster borrowed from a slasher or Texas chainsaw Massacre, a mummy, a living dead, and especially a nonsensical editing. The story is just absurd and the actors appalling. Well a must see if you want to have a great laugh. Of course this is a rare z movie, so you have to deserve it. It's not very far from Jean rollin, it is much worse actually (and that was hard to be!), but at least you never get bored: it's too dumb and completely crazy. Yes, that is the craziest horror French movie ever.
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A film not even worthy of TV!
4 June 2001
We can wonder this film won the Cannes Festival's Palmes d'or. the jury didn't reward a film, but a mere telefilm! Nanni Moretti seemingly doesn't see the difference between the two of them. he simply doesn't know how to shoot a film. Everything looks pretty ugly here except the music soundtrack. Moretti's film deals with a topic often tackled on TV, but doesn't go farther than these TV directors in the depiction of mourning! here we simply discover that it's painful to lose someone we love. How original! Of course the little family has to question itself, but not more! Pity, it has been said thousands of times. Here the family scenes between the father and his son before the later's death are just improbable. They show the father and his son loving each other doing things together. For god's sake, he's a teenager and things are not that easy at that age! it has nothing to do with love. Here for 40 minutes everything reminds us that the son is going to die and we are supposed to be moved. Pathos, you are pathetic! This is melodramatic and it manages to make some people cry in the theatre. If people cry, it's not because they are moved by the film itself, but because they imagine what they would feel if they lost someone they love. This plus the fun fair which is to my mind one of the worst scenes of the film, it's too much for me. Viewers and jury are sometimes blind. This film is bad, really bad.
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6/10
Not as bad as we might think
25 May 2001
This is probably one of the best z movies ever made in France in the eighties. This story of a French country priest sent in a nudist camp for a special ecclesiastic mission is quite enjoyable. Of course everything looks old fashioned (even when the film was released in 1982)and outdated, but Paul Preboist looks so joyful that he manages to communicate his enthusiasm. The same for the rest of the cast, every one seemed to have a great fun. The movie did well in French theatres gathering more than one million viewers throughout France, a feat which would be absolutely impossible today. So if you want to have a look at what we affectionately call "la vieille France" (the good old France)have a distant glance at this show from another time.
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8/10
A clever animated picture
10 May 2001
At the beginning of the eighties, science fiction cartoons were flourishing on tv. Albator and Goldorak initiated the fashion and Ulysses 31 was the most successful illustration in the eighties. The French broadcast Il était une fois l'espace all around the world and even released a movie version of the TV cartoon: "La revanche des humanoides". Its beautiful music score, the intelligence of its story and the quality of its animation harmonize to offer us a great adventure. Still as modern as it used to be, it's worth seeing it.Beautiful.
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4/10
Tiny comedy for z movies amateurs.
6 May 2001
That's a bad film with no substantial screenplay, no convincing actors and a poor direction. It came from nowhere when it was released in France in 1984 and vanished as rapidly as it was released in French theaters. You need a strong sense of humour to enjoy it. This film can't be advised to anyone, just to z movies amateurs.
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4/10
Christian Gion's masterpiece: a bad film!
6 May 2001
That's C. Gion's best film and it is definitively not a good film! Gion is infamous for his bad comedies from the eighties to the beginning of the 90s. He shot "J'ai rencontré le père Noel" in 1984. This Christmas tale stands out in his filmography. It's a movie for children, a film deprived of rude words and saucy situations. There's a change! The problem is that the indigent screenplay doesn't work and Gion is as bad as usual. Nothing works and everything looks so naive, too childish and fake. Surprinsingly only karen Cheryl, at the time a famous anchorwoman and former singer, manages to catch our attention. She's not that bad at all.
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8/10
The moving struggle of two teenagers to get their places in society
1 May 2001
Impossible not to have some Italian classic film while watching this movie as it used again the theme of the stolen bicycle. The eponymous bicycle is here coveted by two teenagers as a means to get their places in society. One needs to earn his living, the other one needs it to get social recognition at school. The bike gets therefore a significant metaphorical meaning in both cases, and it becomes a matter of life. They both struggle to keep it and their despair succeeds in moving the viewer. A beautiful film which outrages us through the depiction of unfair situations and that's the film's greatest strength.
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6/10
A Jewish tragic comedy which hesitates between simple entertainment and the film d'auteur genre more
1 May 2001
The beginning of this film is pleasant, but shallow. The characters and the plot are nice, but pointless. It looks at first like a French version of "Friends". It takes the film some time to become interesting. Indeed the film suddenly seems more interested in getting into the characters' neuroses, enabling the viewers to get a more substantial interpretation of the whole thing.Its reflection on the loss of one's origins and one's roots is strong enough to satisfy demanding viewers. Not bad.
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4/10
A French Thelma § Louise...without Scott's talent
1 May 2001
A feminine road movie deprived of any interest. The aging Clementine Celarié does her best to catch the viewer's attention, but in vain. This mixture of drama and comedy is here too awkward to satisfy anyone.The characters look transparent and flat. It won't be too hard to forget this film...
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August 15th (2001)
6/10
Ordinary tale of middleage crisis
22 April 2001
Fifteen years ago, 3 Hommes et un couffin was a huge hit in French theaters. It was about men who suddenly have to cope with parenthood without being prepared. 15 aout begins that way, with three men who are abandonned for a few days by their wives. They discover the pleasures of looking after children, laundry and housework. Well, nothing new under the sun and fortunately the film goes farther analysing the relationships that exist between men and women. The gap is wide, but not fatal. That's the gentle morals. Not subversive, just nice and especially FORGETTABLE.
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Valentine (2001)
5/10
A predictable horror flick
18 April 2001
Let's say it beforehand: this is an American horror flick. So don't try to get anything original in the plot, there isn't anything. Loud music and caricatures as characters that's all you can find, and that's boring. It reminds us of all the slashers that had been made in the early eighties, the difference is the budget. Well fortunately for horror fans, it manages to be at times scary and Denise Richards offers a second degree which is quite enjoyable, like the whole film as a conclusion. producers should should be careful next time if they don't want to kill the genre again.
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5/10
Boredom in the kingdom of spain
18 April 2001
Spain has made good impression lately with movies such as The Nameless, tesis, Abre los ojos, Los amantes del circulo polar... Unfortunately el arte de morir fails to impress. it inspires boredom instead of inspiring awe and terror. The murders depicted (it's a slasher film) are uninteresting which is the worse defect for a film of that genre.
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Les givrés (1979)
3/10
what if this film could pay for my taxes
18 April 2001
Well, this film is absolutely pointless. It has no screenplay, and it was seemingly shot to pay for the producers' taxes. Largely inspired by Les Bronzes, this holiday story takes place in winter in a French winter resort. the characters have nothing else to do but doing their best to get as many girls as possible, but with no consistent story behind, it is quite hard to get interested. Short, dull and dumb.
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