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A very romantic comedy on the edge of the abyss: in the middle of the deepest life crisis, the Holocaust researcher Toto is assigned an assistant for the congress preparation - Zazie, of ... See full summary »
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Nice, 1976. Agnès Le Roux, daughter of the owner of the Palais de la Méditerranée, falls in love with a beautiful lawyer ten years his senior Maurice Agnelet. It has other links, she loves to madness. Against a background of war casinos, he connects with Fratoni, sour competitor of his mother, who offers him three million francs to take control of the casino. Agnes accepts but resents his betrayal. Maurice away. After a suicide attempt, the young woman disappears ...Written by
"In The Name of My Daughter" (2014 release from France, original title "L'homme qu'on aimait trop" or "The man people loved too much"; 116 min.) brings the story of Agnes Le Roux, a twenty-something young woman. As the movie opens, we are in the mid/late 70s and we see Agnes arriving at the Nice airport and being picked up by Maurice, a guy who works for/with Agnes' mother, Renee. Renee runs one of the many casinos that are at the French Riviera, but the casino is not doing well. Meanwhile we see Agnes and Maurice hitting it off, even though Maurice is married and has a young son, and admittedly also has other mistresses. On top of that, Maurice has a falling out with Renee. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments: first, I knew next to nothing about the movie's plot or story line when I went to see it, and as a result, the movie for me became a guessing game as to which direction this movie would take or what this movie was about in the first place: is it about the strained mother-daughter relationship? or about the possible takeover of the casino by the Mafioso? or about the potential romance between Maurice and Agnes? The Big Reveal comes only 20 minutes before the end, and the of course it all makes sense. But by then my patience had been severely tested, I must admit. Second, as the movie opens, it reminds us that "this is a work of fiction based on real-life facts". What that means to me is that the very general theme or story line of the movie is real, but plenty of 'artistic licenses' have been made as to the details of the movie. Third, if you wonder on what basis I'd go see a movie I know next to nothing about, my answer is: it stars Catherine Deneuve (as Renee). That in and of itself is good enough for me to check out a movie. As it happens, there are other worthwhile performances in this movie, most notably Guillaume Canet as Maurice, but Adele Haenel as Agnes does quite well too. Bottom line: this movie is quite good, although it takes too long to give us the Big Reveal which explains why we have been watching the previous 90+ min.
This movie showed up without any hype or advertising at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati this weekend and I went to see it right away. The Sunday matinée screening where I saw this at was surprisingly well attended. I bet you that it is Catherine Deneuve's name that attracts most people to this movie (it certainly did for me). If you are in the mood for a decent French movie that brings quality acting performances, you might want to check out "In the Name of My Daughter", be it in the theater, or eventually on VOD or DVD/Blu-ray.
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