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Les Sentiments

Director: Noemie Lvovsky

FRANCE| 2003| FRENCH W/ENGLISH SUBTITLES| COLOUR| 94 MINS


Noemie Lvovskys new film is arresting, charming and brash, unafraid to try new things. On the surface, its plot is fairly conventional: two newlyweds (Melvil Poupaud and Isabelle Carree), deeply in love, move to the country so that the husband can take over the practice of a retiring doctor and his wife (Jean Pierre Bacri and Natalie Baye). The young couple sets up house adjacent to the home of the retiree and. while the women bond, the older man shows the newcomer around and introduces him to patients.
But Lvovsky takes a bold step that turns Les Sentiments into something far more ambitious: She introduces a Greek chorus-which throughout the film sings pertinent songs with lyrics that Lvovsky wrote set to music by Jeff Cohen and Philippe Roueche. As in Greek theatre, this chorus provides a commentary on the action in which the mortals are engaged: its detached third person perspective adds a fascinating dimension to a time-honoured plot of amorous intrigue and betrayal. In recent years, modified musicals (Francois Ozon’s 8 Femmes, Alain Resnais’s On Connait la chanson and Lars Von Trier’s Dancer in the Dark) have returned to European Cinema. Lvovsky adds another delicious bauble to this illustrious genre.

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