Isabelle Adjani

Isabelle Adjani

Isabelle Adjani Quick Links

News Pictures Film RSS

Mammuth Review

Mixing warm drama with hilariously deadpan comedy, this is one of the most unusual road movies you'll ever see. But the filmmakers' approach is clever, artful and often very funny as it makes profound observations about human nature.

Serge (Depardieu), better known as Mammuth, is a long-haired biker dude who has retired from working in a slaughterhouse. His sharp-tongued wife Catherine (Moreau) has no idea how he'll fill his time and, when his pension doesn't come through, she starts to worry that her supermarket job isn't enough to make ends meet. So he dusts off his old motorbike and heads off in search of the papers he needs to claim his pension. But riding it sparks memories of his lost love (Adjani), who haunts him as he travels from town to town.

Continue reading: Mammuth Review

Monte Carlo Television Festival 2009 - Closing Ceremony - Inside

Isabelle Adjani and Prince Albert of Monaco - Isabelle Adjani and Prince Albert of Monaco Thursday 11th June 2009 at Monte Carlo Television Festival Monte Carlo, Monaco

Isabelle Adjani and Prince Albert of Monaco

Bon Voyage Review

Roger Ebert once wrote that he would love to see a behind the scenes look at how a bad movie got made. Though it's certainly not the worst movie of 2004, people might get a kick out of a look at the French drama Bon Voyage and how the cast and crew turned a plot revolving around World War II, nuclear explosives, escaped convicts, and unrequited love into such a lifeless experience.

My nominee for the culprit would be the plot, which is convoluted and plodding. In short, Paris is in flux as the Nazis make their advances in 1940. A spoiled, petulant actress (Isabelle Adjani) travels with her new beau of convenience, the Prime Minister, played by a slim Gérard Depardieu. Meanwhile, her childhood friend (Grégori Derangère) - whom she inadvertently framed for murder - has escaped from jail.

Continue reading: Bon Voyage Review

Diabolique (1996) Review

I've been awaiting this update of the 1955 classic French thriller with a mixture of nervous anticipation and deep-seated dread. The original Diabolique was one of the few examples of how thrillers ought to be made...and I figured Hollywood would find some way to screw up the remake. (They did, of course.)

The story is timeless. Evil boarding school principal Guy (Chazz Palmenteri) is married to ex-nun Mia (Isabelle Adjani), a nervous "child bride" with a penchant for heart medication. Guy also has at least one mistress, the cold-as-ice Nicole (Sharon Stone), and everyone knows of and quietly accepts the affair. They all work and live under the auspices of the school, and in the darkness of its halls, a plot is hatched by Mia and Nicole to do away with Guy for good. It starts to get a little hairy when, after a seemingly perfect murder is pulled off, things start to seem not-so-perfect and questions over potential witnesses and the actual life-or-death-ness of Guy begin to surface.

Continue reading: Diabolique (1996) Review

The Driver Review

No names. Literally. The Driver is one of those films where no character's name is ever given, and its too-cool-for-school sentiment bleeds through the entire production. Ryan O'Neal is the title character, a heist getaway driver with mad skills like you wouldn't believe. (The scene where he proves his merit in a parking garage -- all but demolishing the ride along the way -- is worth the price of admission alone.) Sadly, there's a plot attached to this, with Bruce Dern the cop who's always one frustrating step behind the driver, but this movie excels so greatly during its chase scenes that you'll forget about all that business.

The Tenant Review

Another classic Roman Polanski freak-out, new to DVD. It's The Tenant, the ultimate look at paranoia and real estate.

In the film, Polanski plays a quiet man who moves into a small apartment recently vacated by a woman who committed suicide by jumping out of the window -- for unknown reasons. Polanski's Trelkovsky quickly becomes embroiled in mysterious goings-on, including a dalliance with a stranger (Isabelle Adjani) he encounters at the hospital while visiting the former tenant's death bed, endless creepy apartment-mates, and a slow descent into insanity as he becomes obsessed with the life of the former tenant.

Continue reading: The Tenant Review

Camille Claudel Review

I hadn't the foggiest idea who the title character was before popping in this DVD. In fact, I had Camille Claudel mixed up with Claudette Colbert. No matter, it's a quick jump into Claudel's backstory -- she was a French sculptress who tutored under Rodin, eventually surpassed his talents (from some accounts), became his mistress, was scorned, and went totally insane in the aftermath. Isabelle Adjani owns the movie as the title character, and Gérard Depardieu is excellent as the lecherous and slightly unhinged Rodin. Excellent direction and engaging storytelling, even if it does start to lose your interest in its third hour... No matter: You'll never look at the Louvre the same way again.

Quartet Review

Quartet is -- quite strangely -- based on a true story. Jean Rhys's novel traces her life in glitzy Paris in the 1920s, one which stood in start contrast to the city lights.

Rhys -- reinvented here as Isabelle Adjani's wide-eyed Marya Zelli -- found her husband, an illegal art dealer, arrested and thrown into prison. Suddenly broke, she shacked up with a pair of Brits of questionable morality, eventually getting cut loose, whereupon she would become a professional writer.

Continue reading: Quartet Review

Mortelle randonnée Review

The 1999 Ewan McGregor/Ashley Judd flick Eye of the Beholder wasn't based on an original script, and it wasn't the first time Marc Behm's novel was turned into a film.

Mortelle randonnée (literally: Deadly Run) dates back 20 years, produced in France just three years after the book was published. By all accounts it's more faithful to the original story: Older private eye tracks black widow-style murderess, slowly becoming infatuated with her to the point where he becomes unable to do anything to apprehend her -- he's too busy watching.

Continue reading: Mortelle randonnée Review

The Story of Adele H. Review

Adele H. is Adele Hugo, daughter of Victor, the famed French writer. Her story -- and yeah, that's a pretty explanatory title -- is that she moved to Canada, fell in love with a British soldier who didn't love her back, and went crazy as she wrote a diary about this in her own secret language. A 20-year-old Isabelle Adjani makes for a comely and appropriately unhinged leading lady, but there is curiously little material here for her -- or anyone -- to work with. Shot in the dead center of director François Truffaut's career, this is a frivilous curiosity for Truffaut and Hugo scholars... but little more. That it's a true story is utterly beside the point -- there's not enough "story" for us to care. But here's what I don't get though: If Adele wrote her crazy diary in a made-up language, how did anyone manage to translate it into a movie?

Continue reading: The Story of Adele H. Review

Isabelle Adjani

Isabelle Adjani Quick Links

News Pictures Film RSS