Monday, March 12, 2007

Prete-moi ta main (I Do)

Posted by lea at 1:58 PM
Synopsis: ‘immensely satisfying romantic comedy about a softhearted bachelor who pays a free-spirited young woman to pose as his fiancee.’ (www.frenchfilmfestival.org)

Luis, the main character, tries to deflect the attempts of his domineering mother and five sisters to find him a wife by asking the sister of a friend to pose as his fiancée. The plan is for her to dump him on the wedding day, leading to him falling into a great depression, so the grand dames of his family feel sufficiently sympathetic enough to hold off further plans for matrimony. Of course things keep going wrong and everyone has their own agenda, leading to many comical moments.

The charm of this movie is mostly in the fact that it is so very French, starting with Luis’s career as the ‘nose’ for a perfumerie. The characters are wonderfully passionate, the women are strong and dominating, and the mis-en-scene is filled with cafes and art and all things European. The humour was universal, however, and the opening scene is particularly hilarious, a black-and-white flashback that shows how Luis has turned into the player that he has become.

The cinema (in Paddington) was filled with Francophiles who laughed a little too heartily at each joke. Nat thought they were pretentious, and tried to make a point by laughing his version of a ‘cultured’ laugh (o-ho-ho-ho-he) during a quiet moment. Embarrassing, but I could totally see his point.

Overall it was a good movie with a reasonable number of laughs, but the downfall was that I could totally picture it as a Hollywood film. And what’s the bet a Hollywood version will soon come out? If it does, I’d recommend to wait until the DVD is released. In its present carnation however, it’s a worthwhile distraction for 2 hours that allows you to come out of the cinema feeling just that little bit more cultured. Unless, like Nat, you find that sort of thing pretentious!

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