12/27/2011

Loves Me, Loves Me Not (Cert 12A)

The delectable here gives us the darker side of the role she played in her last hit, Amelie. In the first half of this film, we see a romantic relationship between a cute, lovelorn art student (Tautou) and a callous, married cardiologist (Samuel Le Bihan) from the woman's point of view.
It's routine romantic drama, with the man coming out of it badly.
Halfway through the picture, we go back and see the same events from the man's standpoint. The two views are startlingly dissimilar, and the film turns from a romantic drama into a psychological thriller.
It also turns the leading female into a very sick puppy indeed. And, instead of making us sorry for her and building on our emotional investment in her, the second half revels in turning her into a modern equivalent of Glenn Close's slasher in Fatal Attraction.
This might not matter if writer director Laetitia Colombani was up to the demands of making a hardedged psychological thriller, but she never engenders the necessary fear and suspense. Instead, she makes you aware that the characters are merely pawns being pushed around for the film-makers' amusement, not ours.
By the end, I was thinking that the film's approach to mental health is actually far creepier than the heroine. This is a clever little movie, but not an enjoyable one.

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