Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.5
France, 2003. ARP Sélection, France 2 Cinéma, France 3 Cinéma, Canal+, Région Ile-de-France. Scenario by Jean-Paul Rappeneau, Patrick Modiano, adaptation by Jerome Tonnerre, Jean-Paul Rappeneau, Gilles Marchand, Julien Rappeneau. Cinematography by Thierry Arbogast. Produced by Laurent Petin, Michele Petin. Music by Gabriel Yared. Production Design by Jacques Rouxel. Costume Design by Catherine Leterrier. Film Editing by Maryline Monthieux.
Bubbleheaded adventure that, like many of Jean-Paul Rappeneau’s films, doesn’t equal in dramatic content what it has in visual splendour. Isabelle Adjani, who really does have an ageing portrait of herself hanging in an attic somewhere, plays a romantic movie star who begs an old boyfriend (Grégori Derangère) to help her hide the body of a man she killed in self defense. He trips up and the body is discovered by the police, he goes to jail for her crime and gets out only because of the mayhem that occurs in the outbreak of World War II.
Following her and a group of other disparate characters to a Riviera hotel where they are all trying to keep out of occupied Paris, the drama develops into the rescue mission of a Jewish scientist who is in need of safe passage to England.
Despite the beautiful production values and excellent cast (which also includes a hilarious Yvan Attal), the action is never particularly moving and the characters don’t stick.
Toronto International Film Festival: 2003