Bil’s rating (out of 5): B.
France/Luxembourg/Belgium, 2013. Les Films Pelléas, Iris Productions, Iris Films, Canal+, Cine+, Fonds National de Soutien à la Production Audiovisuelle du Luxembourg, Artemis Productions, Tax Shelter Film Funding, Soficinéma 8, Cinémage 7, Hérodiade. Scenario, adaptation, dialogue by Axelle Ropert, Serge Bozon, with the collaboration of Odile Barski, from the novel by James Tucker. Cinematography by Celine Bozon. Produced by Jesus Gonzalez-Elvira, Philippe Martin, Nicolas Steil, David Thion, Eiji Yamazaki. Music by Roland Wiltgen. Costume Design by Christophe Pidre. Film Editing by Francois Quiquere.
After a police informant in a small French town is found murdered, two oddball investigators from Internal Affairs (Isabelle Huppert, Sandrine Kiberlain) are sent to investigate. They believe that the deceased, who was formerly a police officer in his native Algeria, was killed because of faulty (or intentionally faulty) work by the police, stirring up a hornet’s nest in a village rife with racial tension and post-colonial woes. In an attempt to teach us about the absurdity of life and politics, however, director Serge Bozon plays it all out in farcical tones, having Huppert deliver lines like she is in a French Preston Sturges film and giving the two lead characters the delightful quirks of sadomasochistic obsession (Huppert) and voyeurism (Kiberlain). You can tell the intentions are all smart and it should play out smoothly, but the overemphasis of hollow style on a story that is not really full of enough twists reveals a film that is all machinery and no heart.