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  • This little seen Jaques Demy film is no lost masterpiece but is well worth catching. One of the most notable features is how well it captures a look of late sixties LA rarely seen in other movies. The story though is slight and the acting is uneven. Psychedelic rock fans should watch it to see the legendary Spirit - their music is on the soundtrack and they have a few lines. To sum up - an oddly interesting film not a great one.
  • I saw this movie when I was 17, and shortly thereafter decided that I had to move to Los Angeles. In the years since, MODEL SHOP has remained so unavailable and obscure that I was never sure if the movie was really good, or only good to an impressionable small-town 17-year old seduced by its dreamlike visuals of the big city.

    After seeing it again at the American Cinematheque, I have to commend my younger self for having good taste. The unusual locations and spare, sun-bleached desert look give the film an almost hallucinatory air. Only an outsider to LA like Demy can find the poetic beauty in desolate beach cottages strewn among sand-blown paths and churning oil derricks.

    Demy's story of one day in the life of a disillusioned architect conveys a rich emotion perched between confusion, love, fear and optimism. I can't wait to see it again...
  • angelsunchained15 September 2009
    The Model Shop which was made in 1969, is not out-dated today. Gary Lockwood plays a 26 year old who spends an entire day driving about town looking for something meaningful, as the threat of being drafted looms in the background. Clearly a somewhat typical 1960s film in the category of Summertree or Hail Hero, Lockwood has everything, but has nothing. Symbolism abound, and a great take on the American Dream. The film is low-key, as is Lockwood's performance. Unable to feel, or numbed by life's surroundings. Only after receiving his draft notice does Lockwood's character finally admits for the first time that he's afraid of what the future holds. The "Head in the Sand" feelings of many Americans in the 1960s who felt the war in Viet-Nam had nothing to do with them, is exposed here, until it's too late to feel, too late to care, and too late to love. The Model Shop is a "model" of modern film-making.
  • It's always interesting to see a foriegner's view of America (i.e. Antonioni's ZABRISKE POINT, Malle's ATLANTIC CITY), and here, French director Demy's look at 60's L.A.. Looking back in hindsight, it's easy to pick out the details and even cliches that Demy found so fascinating (fashion, car culture, seemingly endless stretches of buildings & lights, psychedelic music (SPIRIT), drugs, underground newspapers, counterculture ideals and, inevitably, the Vietnam War).

    The nominal plot is more just a day in the life (almost exactly 24 hours) of a layabout disaffected wannabe architect (Lockwood) who is in a loveless relationship with a pretty but insubstantial young thing (Hay), who meets a mysterious French woman (Aimee). Not much "happens", but the themes and details enumerated above all weave their way into this portrait of a "day in the life."

    Unfortunately, Demy selected the dull Lockwood as his lead (it strains credulity to really believe he is a talented architect). Lockwood's lack of charisma is what reportedly led Stanley Kubrick to cast him as the dull uncharismatic astronaut in 2001 (you know the old joke, the most "human" of the characters in 2001 was HAL!). Aimee, despite her French hauteur and ennui, brings the only life to the acting (the less said about Hay the better).

    In sum, a tiny slice of life in late 60's L.A.. Not grand, but of some note.

    Technical note. The American Cinemateque debuted a striking NEW 35MM print over the July 4th Weekend. Perhaps, this will signal a few Revival House and Film Festival Screenings, as well as a first-time on Video/DVD debut.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Two somewhat lost souls are studied in this ambling, low-key film, covering a 24-hour period. Lockwood plays a 26 year-old architect student who's left his job because things aren't happening quickly enough for him and he's disenchanted with the time it takes to really make a mark in the field. He lives with his actress girlfriend Hay who, while maybe not soaring to the top, is at least on a track to someplace, unlike him. With money scarce, his car is about to be repossessed unless he can cough up $100. Aimee plays a remote, austere French woman who catches his eye and who he practically stalks in order to meet. Their simultaneously simple, yet complex, existences collide briefly with each giving the other a portion of what's missing in his or her life. Lockwood (who's looking very fit and hunky here) tries to give his often-expository dialogue a realistic, unaffected touch, but often he's defeated by the contrivance and occasional pontificating nature of his lines. He's understated to the point of near disinterest at times. However, he's intriguing enough to hold attention most of the movie. Hay is clearly trying, but she just doesn't have the acting skill or ease of manner to put her character across without seeming forced and unnatural. Top-billed Aimee, who actually has a smallish role, is appropriately jaded and mysterious (and compelling looking), but is almost a little too vague to really grab hold of the viewer. This was director Demy's only Hollywood film and his lack of grasp with the language translates to his cast. It's clear that he didn't have the security with English in order to help his actors massage the dialogue and make it sound as comfortable and as dynamic as it needed to be. Too frequently, lines are delivered with the wrong words emphasized and this bleeds away some of the impact of them. The film does afford a priceless view of Los Angeles in the mid-60s and fans of vintage automobiles ought to have a field day ogling the many, many cars of the era that Lockwood drives alongside in his frequent sojourns on the road. Music in the film vacillates between songs by the group Spirit and classical selections, all of which, in a very odd decision, appear to come from the very same radio station in Lockwood's car!! Cultural touchstones such as rock music and underground/independent newspapers (as well as a seedy model-for-hire joint) provide some moments of interest amid the soul-searching and almost dreamlike meandering of Lockwood. This is definitely not a film for everyone, but for those inclined it's worth a look.
  • The time and the setting (late 60's LA) seem among the most authentic of any movie from that period, probably owing to the director who wasn't trying to exploit the culture like so many American directors of the time did. The film transcends nostalgia, and is very worth seeing for the style, authenticity, and music (provided by one of LA's greatest bands, Spirit). The main character played by Gary Lockwood (lots of TV credits over the years) is under great direction by Demy, who helps to make him into an American version of someone out of French New Wave. And into the wave comes Anouk Aimme, whom he meets in an LA "model shop", about as cool and detached a woman as ever graced the screen.
  • People who know Demy's work will notice the connection between "Lola" "les parapluies de Cherbourg" and "model shop":the first and the third feature Lola ,both played by Anouk Aimée ,and the first and the second one feature Roland ,Lola's unfortunate lover.They will notice how Gary Lockwood ,who plays the male lead in "model shop" resembles Marc Michel,the FRench actor who plays Roland.In "les parapluies de Cherbourg" ,Lola is a memory,and we can hear Roland talk about her to Deneuve's mother.And,how strange,in "model shop",Lola opens her photo album and she begins to recall people from the past,actually the characters of "lola":Michel,the gambler whom she married ,and Frankie ,the marine who died in the war since.Unwarranted nohow:Lockwood's character is to leave for Vietnam very soon.... as Deneuve's fiancé was fighting in Algeria in "les parapluies de Cherbourg".The phone call between Lockwood and his father reveals a lot about the late sixties zeitgeist .

    That said,"model shop" is not among Demy's best and might put off a lot of viewers because it's more "nouvelle vague" than any of this director's works.The first thirty minutes are sometimes boring and it's difficult to feel Demy's touch .There was something magic in the towns of Nantes and Cherbourg ,which does not operate here except maybe during the cast and credits ,where the American town seems terribly depressing .The characters are not as interesting as in "Lola" or "les parapluies" and sometimes seem like relics from a long gone past (eg the hippies,Spirit pop group).The movie really takes off during the Aimée/lockwood scenes but they are few and far between.

    "Model shop" was a commercial fiasco .I remember that when it was released it only stayed one week in the movie theater where it was shown in my town.I did not see it at the time.So I had to wait 24 years to catch it on one of its very rare TV broadcastings.Afterwards ,Demy made "Peau d'Ane " (Donkey Skin) and it was a return to former glories. I will recommend "model shop " to Demy's fans but Demy's fans only.
  • Gary Lockwood cuts an amusingly masculine presence on the screen: dressed in T-shirts and blue jeans, chain-smoking and driving a revamped jalopy--his hair combed down over his forehead like a teenage car mechanic--he's a walking centerfold out of Tiger Beat. Lockwood plays an unemployed denizen of Los Angeles who follows peculiarly glamorous Anouk Aimée one afternoon down the city street and into a model shop (where men can photograph girls--look but don't touch). She's a French immigrant who'll be returning home soon (something to do with her papers), and he's been drafted and about to have his car repossessed. Certainly a one-night-stand is all these two lovelies can afford, but the things they talk about, the connection they make, may last a lot longer. Director Jacques Demy seems to have fallen in love with late-'60s L.A., and much of the movie is spent just following Lockwood around from place to place. It isn't right to say the picture meanders (it hasn't got the agenda to meander from!), though it does feel mighty thin. Films based upon character and conversation are apt to tire some viewers' patience, but those in the mood for a low-keyed, would-be love story could certainly do worse. Lockwood is boyish but solemn, perhaps a loner, and of very few words; still, he connects with viewers on an intrinsic level (you trust him) and his final scene on the telephone is a winner. **1/2 from ****
  • Just viewed the Model Shop, 1969 last night but not all of it because I suddenly switched it on TV, Ted Turner Classics on cable. I liked it a lot. I have not seen a lot of the other films Demy made, but I've seen the other new wave films made by other filmmakers. I really like that period of film-making. Luv it.

    Someone's comment said, he or she didn't the romance between Lockwood and Aimee, that it was chilled, but I liked it because of that. I liked it's slowness, the late sixties time, the long takes as Gary Lockwood drove his car around LA, the whole look.

    I lived in LA, not in early 70's but during the late 70's-94. I miss LA a lot. Sometimes I hated it living there for several reasons, but sometimes I really liked it. Seems like I grew up there in my adult life.

    I knew most all of those streets or was familiar with a lot of the the streets I saw in the film where the character Gary Lockwood drove around.
  • This film is not the worst. Gary Lockwood as lost young architect George Matthews and Anouk Aimee as Lola, a stage name for a lost french model who works at a cheesy photo shop for erotic models.

    The street scenes from 1969 are quite interesting. The actress who plays Gloria died at a young age from arteriosclerosis. She also is good as a rather direction-less actress, she wants to act, but George tells her ..."I will just see you naked in a bathtub, more soap commercials"... .

    The sets are odd in that L.A. was still a relatively undeveloped city....its fun to see the old cars, the oil well and cheap housing George and Gloria live in right on the beach no less. Wonder where that was, in actuality, filmed. It would be interesting to compare how it looks today.

    George basically meets up with some friends, tries to get interested in a newspaper his friends are running, he mostly needs a distraction to prevent himself from thinking about the draft, as his father informs him that he must return to San Francisco after the weekend to be entered in to the military for Vietnam. Vietnam and its cease-fire is hinted at here by a radio broadcast, but overall you get the sense of the pointless war, the young men trying to avoid the draft.

    He eventually meets up again with Lola and tells her he wants to love her. She, a few years older, simply smiles. They eventually wind up at her friends nearby apartment though she is already packing to return to Paris to see her estranged son. They spend the night, and it gives George a slight sense of hope. He allows his former relationship with Gloria to evaporate, debates deserting the army, but eventually realizes, it is what it is.

    Aimee is good, understated here, as a rather lost and empathic character who just wants to afford a flight back to Paris. Not an intricate theme here, but worth seeing for older scenes of L.A. 8/10.
  • The two protagonists here both quip at different points about how much they love Los Angeles and how evocative it is and this is a European fascination with LA I know in my body. Long before we knew this place was the Sunset strip or that one Venice beach, images from there hovered in our collective imagination through movies, deeply ingrained by what they suggest.

    It's a window to a world that - unlike ours on this side bogged by history and relics that solemnly demand memory - is still new, rife for discovery, exploration, guises, mystery. And this is the eye that Demy brings to LA as he has the man drive around streets in his convertible for the sheer exhilaration of floating through a place that hasn't exhausted its potential. It's not so much a matter of style or sightseeing as one of inhabiting life with unfettered presence.

    Along the way it becomes an opportunity to float through glimpses of Vietnam-era America about to give way to Nixon and more bitterness, as vital a document of the era as Zabriskie Point. The notion of heady freedom in the air and yet a telephone call about being drafted can send you off to a jungle death at any moment. Made more evocative by the fact that it captures uncertain life now and not - like The Dreamers - as some dutiful relic of important times.

    But for Demy this is something he finds there and commits to depict. His fascination is the return to a place he has already known - in his case through film noir movies - we see this marvelously as our smitten schmuck decides on a whim to follow the mysterious woman in the white shawl, he flips the radio switch in his car and the whole scene is now suffused with sultry noir smoke with sexual mystery that beckons all the way up to her mansion in the suburbs.

    He an architect - someone who aspires to build things that concretely stand up in time - swimming hapless in the transience of undecided life in his fancy car, stunned in his path by too much horizon ahead. She a model - posing for seductive glimpses of her that only see a pretty body - burdened by too many glimpses she carries from her past, stunned in her path by too much horizon behind.

    So he watches her all the way up to the hills, comes to watch her again in the sex shop she models for, snaps images of her but they reveal nothing. But they decide to meet again that night and in a way that we get to know her as more than image and this makes life fluid again, recalls the past, makes it face itself as transient, and in the end sets her free from the confines of frame and on her journey of return to where her kid awaits while he's left with memory of that night.

    We have known her all along of course, she's Lola from a film made a decade prior by Demy, now tired around the eyes by the dust that settles on life; among the photos is one from those more carefree days in the cabaret in Nantes.

    And so this is the crux of it, the return through images - watching - into some kind of life to know the distance. For Demy it's the return to something he filmed, for us to something we may have seen. The man in fact recalls the protagonist of Lola; you can imagine him imagining Lola imagining him.

    It's one of the most poignant movies on breakups, the anxious spaciousness of youth and those nights when sleeping alone hits the hardest.

    See Lola and this one, wonderful examinations of transience. The Before Sunrise/Sunset films are their image posed for but they end up with the pose.
  • timerrill7 August 2005
    The icon in the "SHOP" window should be activated by now, since Sundazed has finally released Spirit's wonderful, long-lost soundtrack music...really the only reason "Model Shop" is remembered at all. In fairness, Demy's film does provide many tasty images of late-'60s L.A., with nice views from Sunset Plaza -- but, as groovy '60s L.A. movies go, Demy is no John Boorman and "Model Shop" is not exactly "Point Blank." The zonkoid lead performances of Anouk Aimee and Gary Lockwood don't do much to pique one's interest either. But hey, so little footage (if any) of the original Spirit lineup exists that their brief scene alone makes watching worthwhile. So pick up the CD and long live Randy California!
  • Perhaps too many years have passed since last I saw this film. As I recall, it's a good example of Demy's craft as a film maker, with a good performance from Gary Lockwood. Moreover, it captures the atmosphere of the late 1960s and is the sort of picture that doesn't disappoint the viewer on subsequent screenings.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    The empty lives of a would-be architect and a bored French woman collide in Jacques Demy's American film. It's not dull, but it's not easy to sit through either. What the viewer is expected to get out of this is anyone's guess. Gary Lockwood carries the film as a kid about to be drafted and Anouk Aimee plays the French woman. They're fine but Aimee's command of the English language is pretty distracting. She's very distant and it's impossible to tell if that's the actress or the character she's playing. She is of course stunning (and never looked more like Sophia Loren). The film, set in Los Angeles, makes good use of the Sunset Strip. With the terrible Alexandra Hay as Lockwood's frustrated girlfriend and Severn Darden, who has one creepy line of dialog.
  • RamblerReb8 January 2011
    Warning: Spoilers
    ... even though it had flaws. Oh, did it have flaws.

    Despite the stilted, downright on-the-nose dialogue in later scenes between George and Cecille's characters, and some just plain unrealistic bargaining with the repo men, I liked it.

    Admittedly, it was mostly because of the diegetic music, the POV car shots, and the generally understated tone of the piece. One can tell this was the product of French thinking, without a doubt. The narrative is very reminiscent of the Dogme (I know, I know, not French, leave me alone) school of film making, though the last scene, with its non-diegetic music, violates a rule or two.

    In the end, however, the film uses the setting, script, and acting (for good or ill) to tell the story without reliance on plot device or other contrivance (the draft notice doesn't count because it was a real fact of life in 1969).

    If the performances of some of the main actors seem uncompelling, it is because the characters themselves are uncompelling. If George's girlfriend was worth keeping, wouldn't he have kept her? If George was worth keeping, wouldn't Cecille have stayed? The emptiness of their lives is reflected in the alacrity that is shown in escaping from them.

    The moral of the story is: Why don't we all just have our MG TDs picked up and be done with it?
  • One of my favorite films, a French art film set and filmed in late '60s Los Angeles, directed by Jacques Demy and (co-)starring Anouk Aimee ("A Man and a Woman" (Un Homme et Une Femme")). Some points I think are salient:

    1) It really makes you feel like you are there, experiencing (or at least witnessing) what the main character is experiencing. For anyone who was alive at the time (e.g., baby boomers), especially those who spent any time in California, it really takes you back. Just as 1961's "Something Wild" (with Carroll Baker) depicted a New York that no longer exists, "Model Shop" does something similar for late '60s L.A,

    2) It also gives you a strong vicarious experience of a day in one's life when everything seems to be coming apart. I'm sure that many can relate.

    3) Whereas most films and TV tend to overdramatize life, this one seems to miss it from the OTHER side. I found it an interesting change. Admittedly, one wonders how everyone in the film seems to really like and appreciate the main character when, on the surface at least, he doesn't seem to have all that much going for him. The film kind of begs the question, Can someone be TOO laid back? Yet, somehow George manages to make a sympathetic center.

    4) Speaking of "Something Wild", both films have two distinguishable "halves": the first focused on the general situation faced by the main character, and the second on the change produced at a point of desperation by a chance encounter.

    5) I thought that relatively minor and little-known actress (and subsequent poser for Playboy) Alexandra Hay gave a fairly striking performance as George's girlfriend.

    I think that the film definitely qualifies as a "cult film" and, in my opinion, a small gem. Again, it's been one of my favorites since I first saw it on late-night broadcast TV just a few years after it was filmed. (I have no idea whether it had much of a theatrical release.) The DVD can found at discount websites.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Distinguished French New Wave writer-director Jacques Demy's first American film, 'Model Shop', is a belated sequel to 'Lola', his 1961 directorial debut. Both films feature Anouk Aimée as Lola, the sexy, somewhat mysterious love interest. In the earlier film Lola is a French "cabaret dancer" (prostitute) pursued by three romantic rivals. In the latter film Lola, now approaching middle age, works in a Los Angeles "model shop," i.e., a quasi-pornographic establishment that rents out cameras and beautiful pin-up models to amateur photographers. This time around Lola has only one ardent suitor: George Matthews (Gary Lockwood), a 26-year-old unemployed architect with a dimwitted 22-year-old girlfriend named Gloria (Alexandra Hay), a beloved Triumph TR3 about to be repossessed, and a newly arrived draft notice that might send him to Vietnam. After spotting Lola in traffic the usually blasé George is instantly smitten. He follows her back to the model shop and spends his last twelve dollars photographing her—and becoming more intensely infatuated. Lola submits to a one-night stand with George but will not allow the relationship to deepen: she only wants to return to her 14- year-old son in France as soon as she can afford the airfare. A desultory day-in-the-life saga, Model Shop beautifully evokes draft-era existential insecurity—and the desolate urban sprawl that is modern Los Angeles. The California rock band, Spirit, supplies the music. Trivia: Jacques Demy wanted Harrison Ford to play George Matthews but Columbia opted for Gary Lockwood, because of his starring role in Stanley Kubrick's '2001: A Space Odyssey' (1968) he was a much more famous actor at the time. More trivia: Fred Willard has an uncredited cameo as a gas station attendant. Further trivia: In 2005 Sundazed Records released Spirit's previously unreleased soundtrack album, 'Model Shop'. The film was a commercial failure. DVD (Region 2 – France; 2008); DVD (2009).
  • Holding 'Lola' as one of my favorite films, I didn't want to miss this. 'Model Shop' is supposed to be the sequel to Lola, taking place in LA. There is feeling, and obvious New Wave elements, but unfortunately what works in Paris in black and white (or Nantes, for that matter) doesn't work as good in Los Angeles. It works, but it's not as successful.

    The acting is alright, nothing to really complain about, except that the love story between Aimée and Lockwood is too chilly. Lockwood says that he loves her, and already that is doubtful, but when he is in Aimée's apartment he hardly touches her; rather looking down or away, without any passion at all. He seems rather weary.

    What seems to have started of well, turned out to be pretty uninteresting and dull. The magic from Lola (the film) is missing. The various ways in which this movie was connected to the earlier film were pretty silly. The script is good - for the most of the time. The ending could have been made much better. Recommended to Demy fans, others can spend their time watching something else.

    3/5
  • This is a bad film, French New Wave or not. While I don't love this type of movie, even as an example of the genre, it's bad. French Writer/Director Jacques Demy (who I have loved in several of his other films) makes a mostly aimless film about a guy who has the personality of a paper towel...and it's all set in America. The guy is Gary Lockwood and I felt a bit sorry for him in the movie as he really had very little to do except exist as well as do things that rarely made sense. Emoting in any way certainly was NOT in the cards for this guy!

    The film begins with Lockwood in bed with his girlfriend (who, coincidentally, has almost no personality either). There's a knock at the door as finance company guys are about to repossess his car. He gets them to agree to wait until the end of the day and Lockwood spends much of the beginning of the film visiting various acquaintances trying to bum money from them. Finally, he finds a soft touch and gets the $100 he needs, but ends up spending it on a woman he just saw as he was driving down the street (Anouk Aimée) who poses for perverts who pay her to strip. And, as a result, he can't pay for the car. I assume this is supposed to be romantic, but the guy just comes off as a leeching idiot. Plus, when he announces that he loves her even though he doesn't even know her, he seems like a real creeper!

    The film bears some similarities to the famous "Breathless" ("À bout de soufflé"), though unlike Jean-Paul Belmondo (who also plays a low-life), Lockwood's character has no personality and is very, very stiff (in a bad way). At least with Belmondo, he had style and a certain rogue-ish charm. But watching a similar style film with none of the positive qualities of the Godard/Truffaut film, it's a real chore to endure. And, with a plot that seems a bit recycled, the New Wave novelty can't even be respected.

    A dull and unconvincing film, it didn't even benefit from being bad. If it been terrible and not dull, this would have been an improvement--at least with terrible you can watch it for a laugh!
  • It is not often said but Demy is one of France's most tragic film director's. Forget for a while the musicals and some of his less good films, but watch his three masterpieces. ' Lola ', of which ' Model Shop ' is the response to that film, and ' Bay of Angels '. Two are made in black and white and the film set in Los Angeles, 'Model Shop ' filmed superbly in colour. All three films concentrate on characters who dream, who do not want to be absorbed by the tyranny of conventional life and who try to escape. After a seven year wait Lola in ' Lola ' escapes from France to a mythical America and lover, brought from dream into reality. The consequences of this reality are shown in ' Model Shop '. She now longs to return to France and all this is seen through the eyes of a young American who in the space of 24 hours falls in love with her. The characters in all three films seem to collide, meet, break up, meet again and only in ' Bay of Angels ' is there the vaguest possibility love will endure. ' Lola ' said the same thing in the final frames. It is finally in ' Model Shop ' that the illusion of lasting love is shown to us; sadly and full of inner pain. Personally ' Model Shop ' is my favourite of the three. It is both realistic and yet full of dreams that life can be something else than what is on offer. And it is Demy's magic that makes us hope in the dream as we watch. and above all hope that the ' escapes ' of the characters will ultimately win, but even as we watch we know that time and change and even the fickle side of our own natures will win out. Adding to this in ' Model Shop ' is the realisation we must all die; the ultimate passing on and from each other. But for a while in the darkness we go along with the hopes and the illusions and with his miraculous lightness of touch Demy bathes all three films in a joy of life that denies the tragedy of life by embracing it. The casting in all of these three films is excellent. I have reservations about some of his choices of male actors, but none about either Jeanne Moreau in ' Bay of Angels ', giving one of her greatest performances or of Anouk Aimee, who will always remain a presence of magic which Demy clearly responded to. ' Model Shop ' is no minor film. It is a masterpiece.
  • tentender24 January 2010
    I note the many laudatory reviews here and the general tone of those on amazon is similar. I'm sorry, but don't make me laugh! This is a stinker from the word go, that is unless you want to overlook the two most basic elements of film story-telling, to wit: (1) a coherent and preferably imaginatively dialogued script and (2) competent acting. As a follow-up to the brilliant "Lola" and the virtually undisputed masterpiece "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg" -- in the sense that all three films have characters in common -- this is shocking. I think perhaps it will suffice to say that Jacques Demy (who is not only director but co-writer) was not quite comfortable with the English language at the time he made this, his only American film. The same can obviously said of Anouk Aimee, giving a perfectly ludicrous performance (the "model shop" scene, especially, where she gets into supposedly alluring poses for her client's camera must be seen to be believed). Alexandra Hay, however, has no such excuse. She is simply dreadful. As George Cukor unflinchingly said of co-star Aimee, "The lady simply can't act." But I have given this film two stars, and there are two reasons. One: co-star Gary Lockwood (really the top star, though second billed; there is not a frame of the film in which he does not appear), though not a very skilled actor, tries his best, and watching his stuff flop around in his tight jeans (no underwear, as is made clear when he puts his pants on in the first scene) is at least something to concentrate on. He also has a very, very cute butt and looks damn good with his shirt off as well (two scenes). If that is enough for you, then you may enjoy this film. The other reason is that an excellent late 60's rock band, Spirit, not only wrote the soundtrack (supplemented by a number of Classical selections), but appear in the film in one brief scene. They can't act, either, but it's a nice documentary moment, catching them just as they were making their mark. It's rather endearing. My final complaint: Sony's insulting packaging -- super ugly, too.
  • Enjoyed this film from the very beginning to the end and the wonderful photographs of Los Angele, California. George Matthews, (Gary Lockwood) sets his eyes on a beautiful woman named Lola, (Anouk Aim) who is a model in a strange shop. George is having a hard time trying to find himself in Los Angeles, and he does not work, but has plenty of friends who loan him money and at the same time he is living with a gal who is getting tired of George being so lazy in life. There is also a finance company trying to reposes his BMW and things are getting pretty rough for George. You will definitely not be able to figure out how this film is going to end.
  • I saw this movie last night in T.C.M i am a big fan of Anouk Aimee i have see more than few of her movies and always love the way she look even today as an older lady, the movie is slow but very romantic and very sixties , Aimee play this type of prostitute living in USA and she meet this guy younger than her and he fall in love with her i think she play the same part as her other Demy movie Lola, Anouk all the time is wearing white and she was in her late 30s i have to said very few actress are as beautiful and perfect as Aimee, i like the movie very much the first time i saw a movie with Aimee was called A second change she play the friend of Catherine Deneuve by this time she was older but beautiful, the actor Jean luis trintignat said aimeee and bardot were not good actresses but good to look at
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Jacques Demy has one hell of a sense of humor; he took Anouk Aimee to California and signed up a team of Sequoias to play opposite her, in support of Gary Redwood (oops, sorry, Lockwood). This has to set some kind of record for the most wooden screen acting EVER. By comparison Lola, the earlier Demy film featuring Aimee as the same character, was a masterpiece to rank alongside Citizen Kane. Actually Lola was a pretty good 'small' movie and it's nigh on impossible to believe that Model Shop is the work of the same man. Aimee is, of course, a fine actress and was well established at the time she made Lola but here it's a case of one filet mignon and a handful of low-grade hamburgers. Don't waste your time.
  • This is a terrific document of late 1960s Los Angeles. Lots of street scenes from the beach to the hills, and traffic to die for - if only we had to compete with that number of cars these days.

    Anouk Aimée is the big star, with big hair and French insouciance, but Gary Lockwood is the real beauty here. Shame about his wooden acting, though his character is going to Vietnam to die, so perhaps he can be forgiven for the lack of emotion, and he has some cool 1960s friends to sponge from.

    This is 1960s euro-nihilism in America, and while it doesn't hit the heights of great cinema, it's a cool reflection of the times.
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