Movie review: He Loves Me…He Loves Me Not ( À la folie… pas du tout) by Laetitia Colombani

Directed by Laeticia Colombani

Written by Laetitia Colombani Caroline Thivel

Cast:
Angélique- Audrey Tautou
Dr. Loïc Le Garrec – Samuel Le Bihan.
David – Clement Sibony
Rachel – Isabelle Carre
Release date: 2003

Genre: romantic psychological thriller, black comedy

Synopsis:

Angélique  is a pretty young girl and a successful art student who has just won an important scholarship. She seems so happy and so normal – in between creating her art projects, she has a part-time job at a cafe and house sits for a wealthy vacationing family. An ordinary life? Here comes the first darker fact: she also has an affair with a married man or so she keeps telling to all and sundry. The man in question is a well-to-do cardiologist called Loic Le Garrec, easily a decade older than her. The path of true love never runs smooth. The problem is that sometimes there is no path at all.

When Loïc’s wife, Rachel, has a miscarriage, the pair separate. Happy Angélique prepares to leave with Loïc on a romantic getaway to Florence, Italy. However, Loïc doesn’t meet Angélique at the airport, apparently having chosen to mend things with his estranged wife. This is the last straw for Angélique, who is thrown into a self-destructive cycle of clinical depression, ultimately losing her job and the scholarship. While watching the news one night, she learns that Loïc has been arrested for assaulting one of his patients, Sonia Jasmin. She goes to Sonia’s house to convince her to drop the charges. The conversation turns into a scuffle, Sonia has a heart attack and dies. Angélique steals from the house to make it look like a robbery.

Thinking that this will win him back, Angélique goes to see Loïc at his office, arriving just in time to see him being arrested for Sonia Jasmin’s murder, and embracing his wife as he is dragged away. Angélique returns home, turns on the gas and lies down on the floor. At that point the narration goes back in time and we see most of those events presented now from Loïc’s point of view. As you can guess hardly anything remains as it was told by Angélique but saying more would be a huge spoiler.

What I liked:
Oh I liked plenty. It was a deliciously intelligent movie about the power of love and human imagination. It starts like one of these romantic comedies: a beautiful girl loves a man who is, sadly, already taken (aren’t the best ones always already taken though?). Poor girl, deep in love, wants to do anything, simply anything, to have him for herself. Looking at Audrey Tautou you almost imagine that big fat HEA because, let’s face it, who would say ‘no’ to those sweet, chocolate eyes and shy, innocent smile? Of course the fact that she played the main role in Amelie enforces such an image even further. Well, here you are in for a big surprise. This movie is not a romantic flick and Angélique, even though as wide-eyed as Amelie, is hardly an innocent. Well, she might be called that, but it’s only by reason of insanity. He Loves Me…He Loves Me Not has its own charms, but part of its wicked kick is that it’s the anti-Amélie, presenting romantic fixation, not as noble and sweet, but objectively, as something selfish, destructive and highly volatile. In other words as something which might turn very bad.

Tautou could not be better: I am not a big fan of this actress but here, in my humble opinion, she fitted perfectly. She’s infuriating — as well as emotionally present every moment onscreen. The best part is when, because of her great looks and intelligence, hardly anyone believes she might have some serious mental health problems – neither her friend, David, nor her co-worker and best friend, Héloïse, question her credibility when she repeatedly announces how happy she will be with Loïc, how much he loves her, how he is so completely prepared to leave his pregnant wife etc, etc. She is a skilled manipulator with a face of an angel so she gets away with plenty of bigger or smaller lies, a blackmail and even a murder. Who would think such a delicate, pretty girl could be so cruel? You observe with a shiver ( spoiler, highlight to read or skip) how her vaunted affair turns out to be the obsessive fantasy of a stalker barely acquainted with the object of her desire, who just lives in her neighborhood.Where Amélie was a guardian angel for the loners and broken hearts of Montmartre, Tatou’s Angelique is a kind of succubus who ruins people’s life without a second thought. The scariest thing is that she manages to do so from just outside the sphere of perception of pretty much everybody. Such a lovely girl…can she be morally flawed or nasty or vindictive? Nah, impossible she looks so nice….

What I didn’t like:

If you watched ‘The Sixth Sense” the twist in the middle of this movie will be hardly very surprising for you because here it was done in the same way – the movie replays events just from a different perspective. Also I admit there were some boring moments during which I had to stifle a yawn or two and it especially concerns the narration of Loïc. Still the ending was a joy, with some pearls of scenes which definitely made the rest really worthwhile.

Final verdict:
I recommend this one wholeheartedly (pun intended, see the section below) especially for a St.Valentine evening. To encourage you even further I decided post a riddle from the movie.

After Angelique has tried everything with her perfect but rahter unwilling man: sending him flowers, lionising him in a post-impressionistic portrait and even leaving him twenty seven answer phone messages of ‘their’ song (‘L.O.V.E’ by Frank Sinatra, yay!), she decided to send him the last gift. One which would be the biggest proof that she loves him dearly and they are simply made for each other. What was it? Try to guess the answer (or highlihgt to find out): it was a real pig’s heart, so similar to a human one, pierced by a metal arrow; all wrapped tastefully and put into a pretty pink-violet box. How very romantic, n’est-ce pas? ;p

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9 Responses to Movie review: He Loves Me…He Loves Me Not ( À la folie… pas du tout) by Laetitia Colombani

  1. Yeah, the drawbacks of a Mac…still you know why you suffer!

  2. Blodeuedd says:

    Maybe I should watch it one day

  3. heidenkind says:

    Was it a baby with tiny wings attached?

  4. B G says:

    Hi there! You have been nominated for a Leibster Blog award. See this post for more information:http://wilovebooks.blogspot.com/2013/01/liebster-blog-award.html

  5. So very honoured, thank you but sorry, currently I have no time for it. My blog will be freezed till the end of the month actually.

  6. red witch says:

    I have never done that. I haven't even been watching much tv lately. I have been obsessed with genealogical research.

  7. Ask your daughter? Or your son?

Comments are closed.