Just on the strength of the collaboration between Yves Robert and Jean Rochefort, we decided to take a look at this 1979 French comedy, rarely seen these days. It showed up on a French cable channel a few nights ago. It is a story that packs a lot in its one hundred minutes running time.
The chronic cowardice running in the Belhomme family is chronicled for our benefit. Martin, the present member of the clan, has problems he must deal with if he wants to get rid of the curse he has been carrying all those years. When he meets Eva, the beautiful chanteuse, right during the student riots of 1968, it is love at first sight. Martin decides to follow her to Amsterdam in spite of the danger of losing his life at the hand of Eric, the sly man who is also in love with her.
Martin must also deal with a domestic situation he must sort out before he can even enjoy the bliss he is seeking with Eva. He must renounce to the pharmacy and the family, who conveniently forgot about him. A bigger shock awaits Martin after he gets Eva to agree to marry him. Eva has a secret she had not shared with Martin.
Jean Rochefort, an excellent comedian, was in his element in a film that asks him to deploy his deadpan delivery. Catherine Deveuve was asked to play Eva, the singer, the object of Martin's love. It's hard for Deneuve to show some real emotion, as she does here. There is no chemistry between her and her co-star. Others in supporting roles include Michel Aumont, Philippe Leroy, Michel Beaume and Dominique Levanant. American Robert Webber shows up at the end to liven things up.
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