Venus Beauty Institute (1999)

TONIE MARSHALL

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5

Original title:  Venus Beaute Institut

France, 1999.   Agat Films & Cie, Arte France Cinéma, Tabo Tabo Films, Canal+, Sofinergie 4, Centre National de la Cinématographie.   Story by , , Screenplay and Dialogue by Tonie Marshall.   Cinematography by .   Produced by .   Music by .   Production Design by .   Costume Design by , .   Film Editing by

The lovely  plays an employee of a beauty salon who enjoys one-night stands with men but refuses to accept the idea of love, even when a handsome younger man () tells her he’s nuts about her. We later find out that she was involved in the accidental maiming of her ex-lover, and her guilt over this keeps her from allowing any new kind of relationships in her life. The film also follows her two co-employees,  and , as they navigate the world of romance while operating their high class spa. Lovely cinematography, but the story has very little energy and the wonderful acting doesn’t make the characters any more believable.  is notable as the spa’s owner,  has a marvelous scene as a client (she perks up every film she appears in) and is hilarious as a high-paying customer with very few inhibitions.

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