Review Mon Crime – Review on FilmTotaal
Director: François Ozon | Script: Francois Ozon, Philippe Piazzo | Cast: Nadia Tereszkiewics (Madeleine), Rebecca Marder (Pauline), Isabelle Huppert (Odette Chaumette), Dany Boon (Palmarède), Olivier Broche (Trapu), others | Time to play: 102 minutes | Year: 2023
Paris, 1935. During an audition, Madeleine fends off a pushy theater producer and goes to live with a friend who is looking for a job as a lawyer. Moments later, the police are at the door because the producer has been found murdered. The magistrate is convinced that he is guilty, so she decides to pretend that she did it in self-defense. Madeleine suddenly becomes a celebrity and all is well, but of course there is still a gap: the real killer is still out there.
The French play my crime from 1934 has already been filmed twice in Hollywood, a long time ago. The veteran director François Ozon has given himself the task of doing it again in his native land. And he gets it right, because the movie doesn’t show that this was originally for the stage. The script, therefore, is not a very faithful adaptation of the theatrical script.
That results in a little tour of ninety-year-old Paris, and Ozon certainly pulls it off. In the wide shots that give a panorama of the city, it’s clear that the actors are standing in front of a green screen, but that’s not disturbing and most of the scenes take place indoors anyway. It’s a good thing that it looks good, because the many dialogues can’t take this movie out of the source material.
The conversations are all in a cheerful tone. The level of the jokes is pretty high, but certainly not always loud enough to get laughs out loud. As usual, those Frenchmen chattering on and on. The typical rhythm and cultural traits keep the fun going.
That Madeleine is so easily found guilty is due to a mad magistrate whose character is too mad to maintain credibility. She first questions another suspect who reminds her that he was at the magistrate’s house at the time of the murder. The magistrate asks if others are witnesses to this; if this was not in the original work, it may be a nod to the ghost of freedoma surreal classic in which, among other things, two parents take their own daughter to the police station to report her missing.
Opposite that nondescript character is Isabelle Huppert, who steals the scene like a half-forgotten movie star. Huppert understands that she is in for a farce and adjusts her performance accordingly, which automatically ensures that she gets all the attention. The two ladies who have the main roles do a good job, but somewhat simple. It could have been a bit more colourful.
my crime It takes a while to get going and it only really heats up after the court case. Once underway, the remaining seventy minutes fly by, with a saturating finale to round it off. A typical François Ozon comedy, airy and with a mischievous wink.