In the middle of the night, someone brings Ivan's body home to his wife and his sad-faced, jug-eared son. Through flashbacks, the film discloses the relationships among Ivan and his brother...
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Old woman Berthe leaves her house to live in her daugter Emilie's one. Emilie and her brother Antoine have fallen out three years ago and have not seen each other since, but Emilie invites ... See full summary »
In a village in the Southwest of France, 1962. Maite and Francois are 18 years old. They are friends, not lovers. In Francois's classroom, there are Serge, whose brother has just married to... See full summary »
In the woods, a 13-year-old boy is grabbed by an escaped convict and told to bring money later that day. The boy does as he's told, only to be attacked by the convict's partner. A murder ... See full summary »
A young man leaves his native town in southern France to discover Paris. Being too unexperienced and too naive, he drops into the reality of Paris 1991. He soon gives up his dream of ... See full summary »
Realising a dishonest deal has been found out a diamond merchant commits suicide, leaving the gems in question for his wife. Knowing the business from the time before drink largely took ... See full summary »
The story of a girl in love with a boxer. They plan to go abroad after making a lot of money by participating in an interview intended to discredit a politician at elections time. But the ... See full summary »
A crime writer living in Venice while working on his new novel meets and soon marries his real-estate agent. Relocated to a remote house on Sant'Erasmo Island, his obsession with his wife's daily whereabouts takes a dark turn.
In the middle of the night, someone brings Ivan's body home to his wife and his sad-faced, jug-eared son. Through flashbacks, the film discloses the relationships among Ivan and his brother Alex, a cop with a cleanliness fetish; siblings Juliette and Jimmy, Ivan's partners in a seedy nightclub; the love triangle of Alex, Juliette, and Marie, a professor of philosophy; and of Alex and his nephew, Ivan's dour, stoic son. Ivan's death changes every relationship. Images of paragliders, sun bathers, and opera suggest an expansive, colorful world outside the constricted lives of these characters. Written by
Before Christ was a time of orgies. Then came love.
Love's less fun.
Probably. In orgies you give your all. No more, no less. In love, it's never enough. It's always too much or not enough.
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A love triangle. A crime story. A drama about fraternal conflict. All could make fine stories on their own, but in this film they're thrown together, and then given a philosophical spin (appropriate, since one of the characters is a philosophy professor). It's also more character-driven than you'd expect from this type of story; we are taken into the character's motivation, so we understand their actions, rather than have them driven by plot machinations. And it's done like a novel, flashing back and forth, so actions unfold gradually to reveal another layer. Unfortunately, as, it seems, with many films from France, the story doesn't so much end as stop. This may be appropriate with something like, say, UN COEUR EN HIVER, but it left me feeling a little cheated here. Still, this is worthwhile viewing.
Of the actors, the only ones which are immediately familiar to me are Daniel Auteuil and Catherine Deneuve. Auteuil is playing someone who has trouble expressing himself, a character he seems to specialize him, based on what I've seen of his films (JEAN DE FLORETTE/MANON OF THE SPRING and UN COEUR EN HIVER), and he does another fine job here. I've never been a fan of Deneuve; I usually find her too inexpressive and icy. Here, however, she plays a character you usually don't find in crime films; an older woman having an affair with someone younger (here, a woman) who isn't fading or scheming. She makes Marie, who at first seems didactic, fully human.
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