Category Archives: French Movie Reviews

Jeune & Jolie (Young & Beautiful)

François Ozon points the lens at bourgeois desire through the eyes of a young Parisian student and her complicated relationship with sex and prostitution. It’s a lazy summer, and seventeen year-old Isabelle (Marine Vacth) is on holiday at the ocean … Continue reading

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Valley of Love

Small bird and giant, Isabelle Huppert and Gerard Depardieu, play out divorced love as two old friends, equally strong and fragile, bound by an unusual request from their deceased son – he has written a letter asking them to meet … Continue reading

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L’avenir (Things to Come)

Sadness is soothed by reason, and resurrection a full confident moon in writer/director Mia Hanson-Løve’s tale of heartbreak and loss. Nathalie (Isabelle Huppert) is a Parisian philosophy teacher and text-book writer who lives in a modest, book-lined flat with her … Continue reading

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Les Garçons et Guillaume, à Table! (Me, Myself and Mum)

Guillaume Gallienne’s face is pale, soft rising dough that’s been squished with an insensitive fist, in this comic exploration of sexuality, gender and self-acceptance. Written, directed and starring Guillaume Gallienne (as himself, and also his mother) Les Garçons et Guillaume, … Continue reading

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La Belle Saison (Summertime)

Love between two women is a swaying hammock in Catherine Corsini’s tale of complicated romance in the wake of 70s feminism. Carole (Cécile de France) is the sunshine with whom Delphine (Izïa Higelin, a popular singer in France) understandably falls … Continue reading

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Coco Before Chanel

Coco Before Chanel is a cinematic chessboard of personal politics and black and white design.  Of wild horses, reluctant pawns and bishops who refuse to oblige. The queen is of course Audrey Tautou’s Coco; and she observes their moves. Director Anne … Continue reading

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Eperdument (Down By Love)

  Combustive desire shatters lives in writer-director Pierre Godeau’s portrait of a director who falls in love with an inmate in the women’s detention centre he manages. If the narrative wasn’t based on real-life events it would be difficult to believe just … Continue reading

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Elle

At its dark, oddly humorous heart director Paul Verhoven’s thriller is a about a wealthy woman’s response to trauma. Michèle (Isabelle Huppert), owner of a successful video-game company, lives alone in a house in a nice part of Paris, has … Continue reading

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Sauve Qui Peut (La Vie) Every Man for Himself

Godard’s charm is particular: his ability to hold us close to his characters, shake us for a reaction, and then pull us back to the position of voyeur. Sometimes we are with them, and sometimes we aren’t. Depression and solemn … Continue reading

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Conte de Printemps (A Tale of Springtime)

Conversation in Eric Rohmer’s Conte de Printemps is as free as bugs buzzing in tall meadow grasses: a waking-up to truth, and the falling away of wintertime misunderstandings. First in the series Contes des Quatre Saisons (Tales of Four Seasons), … Continue reading

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