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The Dinner Game (1998) - Plot Summary Poster

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Summaries

  • To amuse themselves at a weekly dinner, a few well-heeled folk each bring a dimwit along who is to talk about his pastime. Each member seeks to introduce a champion dumbbell. Pierre, an avid participant of the game, runs into one problem after another that devilishly compromises his secrets, turning the tables on him and his objective, which diverges as the movie progresses. Firstly, wishing to be certain he has selected a winner, he invited his guest, Mr. Pignon, to meet him at home before setting off; but night of all nights, Pierre has put his back out and it is questionable whether he can manage to get to the dinner. The blundering Mr. Pignon will continually spring forward to help relieve Pierre of his troubles, which have drastically compounded, pointing in the direction of friends, taxes and women, and Pierre's dimwit Pignon accordingly will prove his substance to the end.

  • Each week, Pierre and his friends organize what is called as "un dîner de cons". Everyone brings the dumbest guy he could find as a guest. Pierre thinks his champ -François Pignon- will steal the show.

  • The wealthy editor Pierre Brochant and his friends have a competition: every Wednesday, each one of them invites the dumbest jackass he can find for a dinner, where each one of the guests is invited to talk about himself as much as possible. Later, after the guests say goodbye, the group of friends makes fun and elects the more stupid and imbecile guest. Pierre invites François Pignon, a man that works in the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and makes "maquettes" to forget his beloved wife, who had went away with a friend of him two years ago, for the dinner. However, a tough pain in one vertebra of his spinal column does not allow Pierre to meet his friends for the game and he stays alone with solicitous, but clumsy and stupid François in his apartment. Every attempt of François helping Pierre goes wrong, becoming the night of Pierre a terrible nightmare.

  • Every wednesday night a few guys have a meal together. There is a game coupled with the meal: each one of them has to bring an "idiot". The game consists in making the idiots talk about there ideas and passions so that the hosts can have a good laugh. At the end they will choose the "idiot of the evening". One of the hosts has invited his idiot home so they could go to the dinner together, but unfortunately he gets a severe pain in his back due to an accident that day and can't go to the "meal of idiots". Even worse is the fact that the idiot tries to help him all the time, and naturally does everything wrong and aggravates every situation.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • The Dinner Game, or Le diner de cons, follows the efforts of a group of judgmental businessmen to find the most dense, strange, idiotic people imaginable to invite to a secretly competitive dinner datea date in which they will be asked to talk about themselves and their hobbies. This occasion isnt meant to be informative or charming; mean spirit and black comedy drive this social manipulation forward. Hilarity ensues when Monsieur Brochant is tipped off to a particularly eccentric matchstick artist, the bumbling but good-natured Pignon. Excited and naïve, Pignon is hoodwinked into joining the dinner gamethe promise of a book deal on his matchstick models is offered as baitbut when Brochant throws his back out the buffoon arrives, becoming the sole caregiver to the incapacitated would-be predator. In Pignons incompetent care Brochant is hurt, over and over again, physically, romantically, and emotionallyan ironic twist in the fact that he was supposed to be the one dishing out the pain. With a wrecked romantic life, a luxurious apartment up for unintentional audit, a hurt back, and an irate disposition, Brochants life cant seem to get any worstuntil he hears word his wife was in an accident. This unfortunate situation presents him with a final attempt to reconcile with his wife, though she wont take his calls. In desperation he enlists the divorced Pignon to share his true story of betrayal, heartache, loss, and depression with Mrs. Brochantan act that nearly succeeds, but like most things with Pignon, are obliviously unintentionally foiled.

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