Helene De Fougerolles

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Helene De Fougerolles Friday 22nd May 2009 2009 Cannes International Film Festival - Day 10 - Premiere of 'The Imaginarium of Doctor Parn' - Arrivals Cannes, France

Helene De Fougerolles
Helene De Fougerolles

The Sea Review


OK
Taking its cue from Thomas Vinterberg's chilling family reunion drama The Celebration, Baltasar Kormákur's The Sea - the Icelandic entry for Best Foreign Film in this year's Academy Awards - charts a disastrous family gathering brought about by a craggily patriarchal figure determined to see -- and torment -- his brood one last time before death. But whereas Vinterberg's film, shot according to the tenets of Dogme 95's "vow of chastity," was made harrowing by its bleakly naturalistic style, Kormákur's film tells its tale of sins passed down from father to children with a big-budget professionalism. Kormákur's widescreen compositions have the silken iciness of an arctic wind, and though his self-conscious direction has an undeniable loveliness, it also calls attention to his story's flimsiness.

The local fishing magnate Thórdur (Gunnar Eyjólfsson) is an arrogant, selfish, and self-righteous man, and his refusal to modernize his plant has resulted in the loss of market share to his rival corporate competition. Desperate to place his fish processing plant in good hands before he dies, Thórdur demands that his children come to visit, even though none care much for their blustery father. Ágúst (Hilmir Snær Gudnason), Thórdur's youngest child, is supposed to be attending business school on his father's tab, but has abandoned his studies for a life as a songwriter with his beautiful (and pregnant) Parisian girlfriend Françoise (Hélène de Fougerolles). Ragnheidur (Gudrún S. Gísladóttir), Thórdur's daughter, is a bitter woman married to nebbish wimp Morten (Sven Nordin) and the mother of a spoiled son, and remains haunted by crimes committed against her as a child. Thórdur's loyal first son Haraldur (Sigurdur Skúlason), who has worked at his father's plant since the age of 10, covertly despises the old man, and is eager to take over and sell the business so that he and his greedy, gaudy wife Áslaug (Elva Ósk Ólafsdóttir) can enjoy the spoils of wealth. All three detest Thórdur's second wife Kirstín (Kristbjörg Kjeld), the sister of their long-deceased mother, while their cousin María (Nína Dögg Filippusdóttir), still living with Thórdur and Kirstín, harbors romantic feelings for Ágúst. Suffice to say, theirs is a mightily dysfunctional family.

Continue reading: The Sea Review

Va Savoir Review


OK
Only the French could make a romantic comedy that clocks in at more than 2 1/2 hours in length. And of course, it wouldn't have much of a plot, either. This wafer-thin production, reminiscent of a really long Oscar Wilde play, Starring Jeanne Balibar (the poor man's Audrey Tautou), the movie is a hodgepodge of love triangles and petty theft, some of which amuses, but not for long enough to keep this critic's interest over its full running time. A curiosity that's easily forgettable.

Va Savoir (Who Knows?) Review


Good

Interlocking romantic misadventures beget both amusement and broken hearts in "Va Savior," a City of Lights charmer with a semi-serious edge and several superb performances.

Directed by Jaques Rivette ("The Gang of Four"), the film's affairs are set in motion by the arrival of an Italian theatre company in Paris to put on a production of Luigi Pirandello's "As You Desire Me" (which plays to half-full houses). The star of the show is 30-something Camille (Jeanne Balibar), a French actress who left Paris three years ago after a bad breakup with her pretentious professor boyfriend Pierre (Jaques Bonnaffe).

Since then, Camille has become half-heartedly involved with her director and co-star (Sergio Castellitto), a middle-aged litterateur, while Pierre has married a beautiful ballet teacher (Marianne Basler). But now in the same city again, they seem self-destructively unable to resist each other's gravity. Camille doesn't want Pierre back, but needing an ego boost, she wants to gauge his interest in her -- which quickly drives him to obsessive behavior.

Continue reading: Va Savoir (Who Knows?) Review

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Benedict Cumberbatch Interviews Tom Hiddleston, But Avoids The Taylor Swift Question

Benedict Cumberbatch Interviews Tom Hiddleston, But Avoids The Taylor Swift Question

One Marvel Universe star interviewed another, as part of Interview magazine's October edition.

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Va Savoir (Who Knows?) Movie Review

Va Savoir (Who Knows?) Movie Review

Interlocking romantic misadventures beget both amusement and broken hearts in "Va Savior," a City of...

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