Read My Lips



Sur mes Levres : France 2001 : Jacques Audiard : 115-8 mins

Emanuelle Devos snatched the Best Actress Cesar from Audrey (Amelie) Tautou’s dainty mitts for her powerhouse performance as Carla, a dowdy, severely hearing-impaired secretary in a property-development company. Carla’s supposed “disability” turns out to be nothing of the sort when she helps out tough-but-sensitive ex-con Paul (Vincent Cassel), a colleague in serious trouble with some vicious gangsters. This is a slick, absorbing modern noir, with just the right amounts of humour, romance, cleverness and bone-crunching violence. Audiard’s script (co-written with Tonino Benacquista) takes Carla – and the audience – down some unexpected alleyways, and his restrained direction pays just as much attention to the intricate soundtrack as the visuals. So make sure you catch it on the big screen while you can – otherwise you’ll have to wait for the inevitable (and inevitably inferior) Hollywood remake.

7th May, 2002
(seen 17th February, Cinemaxx Berlin – Berlin Film Festival)

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by Neil Young
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