The Women on the 6th Floor *** "Very Pleasant movie"
Les Femmes du 6ème étage
Directed by Philippe Le Guay
Running time 104 minutes, France, 2010.
With Fabrice Luchini, Sandrine Kimberlain, Natalia Verbeke and Carmen Maura
Opening October 7 at Paris Theatre.
Paris, 1960. Jean-Louis lives a bourgeois existence absorbed in his work, cohabitating with his neurotic socialite wife Suzanne. The couple’s world is turned upside-down when they hire a Spanish maid Maria through whom Jean-Louis is introduced to an alternative reality just a few floors up on the building’s sixth floor, the servants’ quarters. There, Jean-Louis befriends a group of sassy Spanish maids, who teach him there’s more to life than stocks and bonds, and whose influence on the house will ultimately transform everyone’s life.
The Heir Apparent: Largo Winch ** "feel good super hero movie, disappointing for those who read the comic book"
Directed by Jérôme Salle
Running time 109 minutes, France/Belgium, 2008.
With Tomer Sisley, Kristin Scott Thomas, Gilbert Melki
Opening October 7.
Billionaire Nerio Winch is found dead, drowned. An obviously suspicious death as Nerio is the founder and majority shareholder of the powerful and sprawling W Group. Officially, Nerio had no family. But he had a secret he kept well-hidden: a son, Largo, adopted nearly thirty years before. The only problem is this young heir has just been thrown in prison deep in the Amazon. Nerio murdered. Largo in prison. What if these two events were part of a plot to take control of the Winch empire?
My Afternoons with Marguerite ** "emotionally engaging and very funny"
La tête en friche
Directed by Jean Becker
Running time 82 minutes, France, 2010.
With Gérard Depardieu, Gisèle Casadesus, Maurane, Patrick Bouchitey.
It's the story of one of those improbable encounters that can change the course of one's life: the encounter, in a small public garden, between Germain, fifty and barely literate, and Margueritte, a little old lady passionate about reading. Forty years and 220 pounds separate them. One day, purely by chance, Germain sits down beside Margueritte. She'll go on to read aloud extracts from novels and thereby allow him to discover the magic of books, from which Germain imagined he was excluded for life.
Directed by Gustave de Kervern and Benoît Delépine
Running time 92 minutes, France, 2010.
With Gérard Depardieu, Yolande Moreau and Isabelle Adjani
At the age of 60, Serge Pilardosse (Depardieu) is retiring from his job at a slaughterhouse. But when he tries to claim his benefits, he discovers that several of his former employers "forgot" to declare his earnings. The only way he can get the full amount he's owed is to revisit his old workplaces and gather the missing affidavits. He mounts his vintage 1970s motorcycle and sets off on a strange journey through central France that will bring him into touch with old friends, family and even his lost first love (Adjani).
Gainsbourg : A Heroic Life ** "Passionate"
Gainsbourg (Vie héroïque)
Directed by Joann Sfar
Running time 130 minutes, France, 2010.
With Eric Elmosnino, Lucy Gordon, Laetitia Casta.
The film is based on Sfar’s best-selling graphic novel and follows the singer, born Lucien Ginsburg to Russian-Jewish parents, from his precocious childhood in Nazi-occupied Paris, to his transition from painter to jazz musician to pop superstar, and through his relationships with the many women in his life including Brigitte Bardot (Laetitia Casta), Juliette Greco (Anna Mouglalis), and Jane Birkin (Lucy Gordon). Gainsbourg was as famous for his decadent life, fin-de-siecle aesthetic, and cynical wit as for his clever lyrics and musical genius, which went through several reinventions.
Love Crime * "wants to but do not convince"
Directed by Alain Corneau
Running time 104 minutes, France, 2010.
With Kristin Scott Thomas, Ludivine Sagnier and Patrick Mille.
Isabelle (Sagnier) is the young ingénue assistant, while Christine (Scott Thomas) is the older woman, a senior executive in a multinational company doing deals around the world. At first they are friendly. Christine, the able executive, is happy to pass the grunt work along to the up-and-coming Isabelle as she learns the ropes. But when Christine starts to take credit for Isabelle's ideas, and a fellow worker bee begins to fuel Isabelle's growing doubts about Christine's duplicitous "all-for-one" attitude, the ground is prepared for all out war.
Mozart's Sister *** "Beautiful music, beautiful backgrounds, like a piece of chocolate"
Nannerl, la soeur de Mozart
Directed by René Féret.
Running time: 120 minutes, France, 2010.
With Marie Féret, David Moreau, Marc Barbe, Clovis Fouin.
A speculative account of Maria Anna “Nannerl” Mozart (Marie Feret), five years older than Wolfgang (David Moreau) and a musical prodigy in her own right. Originally the featured performer, she has given way to Wolfgang as the main attraction, as their strict but loving father Leopold (Marc Barbe) tours his talented offspring in front of the royal courts of pre-French revolution Europe. Approaching marriageable age and now forbidden to play the violin or compose, Nannerl chafes at the limitations imposed on her gender. But a friendship with the son and daughter of Louis XV offers an alternative.