Monday, July 10, 2006
One hundred hairs make a man
My cinematic treat for the weekend was a French offering by director Emmanuel Carrere, who wrote the novel the film is based on. The title of this delectable double-dip of suspense and wry humor is La Moustache.
Out of sheer laziness and a need to leave for the gym before it gets too late, I'm going to post the neatly crafted mini-review that L.A. Weekly writer Scott Foundas gave this lovely jewel box of a film. My only quibble with his take on the movie is that he describes the beautiful female lead Emmanuel Devos (also brilliant in a similarly enigmatic role in last year's Kings and Queen) as being "Rubenesque."
Let me tell you, I just viewed a Rubens collection at The Getty Museum and got a close-up look at the fleshy folds his glowing pale females boasted around their midsections. Emmanuel Devos, even with the ten pounds the camera is said to add, is curvy, but in a very slender, fit way. Not even approaching plump. It just goes to show how the skeletal standard of Hollywood beauty has skewed the eye of the beholder.
Here is Scott's review, for your perusal:
"LA MOUSTACHE - A man named Marc (Vincent Lindon) wonders “What if I shaved off my mustache?” Then, he does it, and with that one simple gesture tips his life into existential crisis. No one, it seems — not even Marc’s own wife (Emmanuelle Devos) — remembers that he ever had a mustache, and before long, other seismic changes are taking hold in Marc’s post-hirsute universe, unnoticed by all but him. Is Marc going crazy? Or has he just lost his sense of self, along with that hair on his upper lip? Those are cards that French director Emmanuel Carrère’s debut narrative feature holds close to its vest for most of its running time — a tactic that may irritate as many viewers as it enchants. But the pleasure of La Moustache is that it doesn’t feel the need to explain itself at every turn. Part absurdist comedy about the institution of marriage, part paranoid Kafkaesque fantasy, it’s a minor-key reverie on the way our own lives can sometimes feel alien to us. Not least, it’s also a fine showcase for two of the most appealing actors in French movies today: the dapper Lindon, who manifests his character’s mushrooming confusion with dogged precision, and Devos, ever radiant in her Rubenesque beauty."