MARGUERITE

XAVIER GIANNOLI

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Wealthy socialite Marguerite Dumont (Catherine Frot) lives for music; an amateur soprano, she loves nothing more than to host private recitals in her well-appointed home. She is, however, quite hopelessly tone deaf, screeching her way through Mozart’s Queen of the Night and its punishing arpeggios in blissful ignorance of her shortcomings. Her audience is split between those who indulge her eccentricities, such as loyal chauffeur Madelbos (Denis Mpunga), who has spent a lifetime shielding her from terrible press notices, and young intellectuals who view her as an irreverent and potentially anarchic figure.

A combination of financial largesse and self-delusion leads Marguerite to consider a grand public concert, an undertaking that might push her already brittle sense of self to breaking point. Xavier Giannoli (The Singer) has created an opulent period comedy drama that doubles as a nuanced character study of a singular talent. (Notes by David O’Mahony.)

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129 minutes, France, 2015, Digital

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