Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB
France/United Kingdom, 2002. Canal+, Films 13, France 2 Cinema, Gemka Productions, L&G Productions, Les Films 13. Screenplay by Claude Lelouch, Pierre Leroux, Pierre Uytterhoeven. Cinematography by Pierre-William Glenn. Produced by Claude Lelouch. Music by Michel Legrand. Production Design by Johann George. Costume Design by Pierre Bechir. Film Editing by Helene de Luze.
A brilliant Paris jewel thief (Jeremy Irons) who is suffering from periodic blackouts wishes to sail the world in his new boat. A beautiful jazz singer (Patricia Kaas) who is developing a mysterious illness much in the same manner leaves her nightclub and goes to Morocco for another gig after her boyfriend starts an affair with her best friend. Fate throws the two of them together and they attempt to reach a holy grave in the mountains to heal whatever ails them, in the process discovering a deep connection.
Gorgeous, exotic locales help fashion a lush and romantic tale, the kind of unimportant fluff that Claude Lelouch specializes in making, complete with black-and-white-to-colour photographic effects and a fantastic jazz score. In the years since the interminable A Man And a Woman, however, Lelouch is a stronger storyteller, and here his characters are richer and his sense of style more of a contribution to the story instead of an attempt to hide its shortcomings. Kaas has a gorgeous singing voice and marvelous presence, while Irons is charismatic and riveting in the lead, but both these characters and their story would have been better served by a steadier pace and maybe some more romantic urgency.