Thursday, October 06, 2005

An Amazing Couple (2004)

I think the operative word is "irritating," not "amazing." This flat attempt at French farce has been crafted with no regard towards timing or credibility -- it's just a procession of avoidable occurrences and misunderstandings, and it clunks like a Gremlin with a busted transmission. The idea of Lucas Belvaux's "Trilogy" is a solid one, and the experiment is interesting from a cinema-theory standpoint. But that doesn't make the films involved any easier to watch. I mean, when a character in this film turns to the camera, breaks the fourth wall and straight-out tells us the theme of the three films, am I supposed to nod and say, "Ah, yes, very clever"? Or am I more justified in standing up and screaming, "Yeah, I got that, you insecure little shit, now hurry up and get this movie rolling before I fling the DVD across the room"? That ton-o'-bricks moment, though, is typical of Belvaux's approach with this film. Farce requires a light touch, but Belvaux crushes any potential for merriment with his tiresome idiot plotting and his bizarre insistence on making both husband and wife look as unsympathetic and petty as possible at all times. Maybe they are an amazing couple anyway -- after all, how often do two perfect nitwits find each other?

Grade: C-


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