Gregorie Moulin

Artus de Penguern, who will be familiar to audiences for his role as the melancholy blocked writer in Amelie, has directed his own Paris-set comedy that replaces the sweetness of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s colourful confection with jet-black humour and weirdn ess. Gregoire (played by de Penguern) is one of life’s unfortunate losers. Orphaned on the day of his birth, raised by badgering grandparents, and beaten up by the only girl he loved in school, he seems to find disaster in every aspect of his life. Things look more promising when he moves to Paris and becomes obsessed with a ballet teacher he sneakily arranges to meet. But will Gregoire make it to the date or will fate conspire against him as usual?
As Philip Kemp noted in Sight and Sound, Gregoire Moulin might almost have been deliberately conceived as the anti-Amelie. Both films share a heightened, stylised vision of Paris; in both the lead character, scarred by a childhood fatality, timidly adores a love-object from afar. But where in Jeunet’s saccharine whimsy virtually everybody can be redeemed by the power of sweetness and innocence, de Penguern’s city is peopled by crazed monomaniacs whose vindictive fury can be stilled only by violent death. Anyone who believes Parisians are the rudest and most ill-tempered people in the world will find their prejudices amply confirmed.
France, 2001. English subtitles. Colour. Anamorphic.Dolby digital stereo. 90 mins.

Book Tickets