Category Archives: French

A Prophet – 2009 – Jacques Audiard

If film reviews are sometimes a roll call of adjectives then A Prophet is grim, brutal, brilliant. The eponymous prophet,  a Machievellian prototype,  serving six years in a Paris jail, gets played and plays.  The soundtrack, plot, production and acting – all magnifique. Audiard just gets better.  More please. JJ


Exit Through the Gift Shop – 2010 – Banksy?

For his latest piece Banksy has created an ‘artist’. And he’s shit, but that’s hardly the point. As maddening as this film might be for an artist with something worth painting, it’s worth looking at for shits, giggles and post-modern moans. JJ

Couscous – 2007 – Abdel Kechiche

Much in the vein of Arau’s Like Water for Chocolate and Hallstrom’s Chocolat, but deeper, livelier, and much darker. One can’t help feeling that Tunisian-born Kechiche thinks that all is futile. This is an uncut diamond. A new cut and 30 minutes less wouldn’t hurt this a bit. Omid Nikfarjam

Roman de gare – 2007 – Claude Lelouch

If you liked the sometimes violent scripts of Chabrol and Truffaut,  strongly inspired by Hitchcock, or the endless dialogues of Rohmer about love – take a bus and go watch Roman de gare.  A is B, or C but no, maybe it’s D. Is E, killed by F or by G? Is this character even alive.  Lots of questions, and answers too. Mario Alemi.

Jules et Jim – 1962 – François Truffaut

After watching this bizarre love triangle I was surprised that Catherine, the female tempest, wasn’t given a title credit. Interesting also to note how much Amélie, the most successful French film of the last decade, mimicked the quirkiness and playfulness of this entertaining and intriguing gem. JJ

Time To Leave – 2005 – François Ozon

images5.jpegA gay fashion photographer facing his mortality is determined to leave a legacy. Now is the time for reviewing old memories and trying to leave a trace in a future he’s got no place in. Ozon’s made a little gem. I’ve rarely come across a movie about loss and death as warm and reassuring. Omid Nikfarjam

13 Tzameti – 2005 – Géla Babluani

th-fred.jpgWhat would it take for you to kill someone? In Tzameti the protagonist unwittingly ends up in a secretive but deadly game of Russian roulette after following instructions intended for some one else. Shot in black and white, it’s nerve wracking, visceral and crazy.