The Dinner Game

"OK"

The Dinner Game Review


Maybe it's a cultural thing, but I just don't find Francis Veber's brand of French farce all that funny. "La Cage aux Folles"? Feh. "Le Jouet"? Nice try. "Les Comperes"? Whatever.

But then again, I think the American remakes of these movies -- "The Birdcage," "The Toy" and "Father's Day," respectively -- are considerably worse.

"The Dinner Game" seems to be more of the same. The writer-director's new effort is about a club of Parisian yuppie socialites who gather monthly for a dinner at which they compete to see who can bring the biggest idiot.

The concept isn't a bad one, but the picture never follows through. With that ripe set-up, all Veber delivers is set piece about a newly recruited snob (Thierry Lhermitte), invited at the last minute, who is desperately seeking a presentable dimwit for the dinner.

Most of the comedy comes as this fellow's karma catches up with him the night before the bash. His wife leaves, he hurts his back, and the only person showing him sympathy is his chosen victim (Jacques Villeret) -- a nervous, loquacious, rolly-polly accountant, obsessed with making match stick models of famous monuments -- who has ineptly come to his aid and proceeds to make matters worse on nearly every front.

While the mean-spirited sitcom isn't entirely unpalatable, many of its laughs fall flat due to the movie's poker-faced tone.

As a foreign film, "The Dinner Game" may feel unusual or exotic in some way, but in fact Francis Veber is the most Hollywood of French filmmakers, cranking out one lowest-common-denominator comedy after another, most of them immediately picked up for American remakes without much of an effort to improve upon them. His other middling Hollywood redueax include "Quick Change," "Three Fugitives" and "The Man With One Red Shoes," and DreamWorks has purchased this one as another Robin Williams vehicle.

Veber is no auteur, and "The Dinner Game" hasn't any more substance or humor than his other fare.



The Dinner Game

Facts and Figures

Run time: 80 mins

In Theaters: Wednesday 15th April 1998

Box Office Worldwide: $78.6M

Budget: $12.5M

Distributed by: Lions Gate Films Inc.

Production compaines: Gaumont, EFVE, TF1 Films Production, TPS Cinéma

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 73%
Fresh: 33 Rotten: 12

IMDB: 7.7 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Pierre Brochant, as François Pignon, as Juste Leblanc, Daniel Prévost as Lucien Cheval, as Christine, as Marlène Sasseur, Edgar Givry as Jean Cordier, Christian Pereira as Dr Sorbier

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Dunkirk Movie Review

Dunkirk Movie Review

Britain's epic 1940 evacuation of Dunkirk has been dramatised on film before, but no one...

Killing Ground Movie Review

Killing Ground Movie Review

From Australia, this dark and edgy thriller is skilfully made by writer-director Damien Power to...

City of Ghosts Movie Review

City of Ghosts Movie Review

This award-winning documentary plays like a thriller as it traces the work of a group...

Cars 3 Movie Review

Cars 3 Movie Review

It's been six years since the last Cars movie (there were two Planes movies in...

The Beguiled Movie Review

The Beguiled Movie Review

In her inimitable loose style, Sofia Coppola remakes the 1971 Clint Eastwood movie from a...

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

War for the Planet of the Apes Movie Review

The surprisingly thoughtful prequel trilogy comes to a powerful conclusion with this robust, dramatic thriller,...

It Comes At Night Movie Review

It Comes At Night Movie Review

This sharply original horror film not only approaches its premise from an unexpected angle, but...

Advertisement
Okja Movie Review

Okja Movie Review

As Tilda Swinton reteams with her Snowpiercer director, Korea's Bong Joon Ho, it's perhaps unsurprising...

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Movie Review

This may be the third reboot of this franchise in 15 years, risking audience exhaustion,...

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Despicable Me 3 Movie Review

Actually the fourth film in the series (don't forget the prequel Minions), this animated super-villain...

Baby Driver Movie Review

Baby Driver Movie Review

Wildly energetic and so cool it hurts, this action movie has been put together in...

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

All Eyez On Me Movie Review

There's a clear sense that this Tupac Shakur biopic is hoping to build on the...

Hampstead Movie Review

Hampstead Movie Review

Deliberately appealing to older audiences, this undemanding comedy-drama comes with a hint of social relevance...

The Book of Henry Movie Review

The Book of Henry Movie Review

Apparently, this offbeat script had been making the rounds in Hollywood for some 20 years...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.