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  • Warning: Spoilers
    L'addition is a fantastic film, with great performances by Richard Berri, Victoria Abril and Richard Bohringer. Very well known actors in France and they give solid performances. It is best to see the original French version to really appreciate the acting and it also stars Vincent Lindon in one of his earliest appearances in Film. With a wonderful soundtrack by Jean-Claude Petit, you can't help but get swept in and intrigued about how one man ends up in prison for a small crime to being subjected to an obsessive vendetta by a cold and revengeful prison guard. The love story is very passionate...I highly recommend that you see this film. %
  • Warning: Spoilers
    That's what the title means.

    In the Bible,Esau got lentil stew and lost his father's blessing.In "L'Addition" ,the hero gets a shoplifter's love and loses his liberty and his honor because of a can of caviar.

    And this stolen food leads him to a true descent to hell,a la "midnight express" (the endings are almost similar).For a French,the story may seem a bit implausible :even André Cayatte,the master of the filmed "miscarriage of justice" would not have dared that!Besides ,the main character is not a dropout but an educated stage actor !His lawyer is probably the worst you have ever seen in a movie:he does not even think of appealing against the judgment! And yet the movie is never boring ,thanks to the two principals.Richard Berry gets out of his way to make us feel for his character and he brilliantly succeeds;Richard Bohringer was par excellence the villain of the eighties and the part of the sadistic warden was tailor made for him;very spare of words and gestures ,he gives the jitters .A good idea is to have Berry imitate his voice in two sequences .If you forget the implausibilities ,it's pretty entertaining.
  • This prison drama is well-directed and acted enough to get you past its considerable implausibilities: We're supposed to believe first that the entirely innocent protagonist is sent to jail for trying to cover for a stranger's shoplifting (Victoria Abril. whose character later marries him, perhaps out of guilt). Then he's almost immediately an innocent bystander caught up in other prisoners' jailbreak, and is given a long prison sentence for THAT based on guards' falsified testimony. The rest of the film has him tormented by the guard who blames him for his being wounded, even though that wasn't at all the hero's fault, either. The result is variously like "On the Yard," "Fortune and Men's Eyes," "Midnight Express" in that the new fish is abused by guards and fellow prisoners alike, blackmailed, beaten and forced into violence. Though in the end the story is not as bleakly worst-case-scenario as you might be expecting.

    Berry brings a lot of conviction to his role, Richard Bohringer is excellent as the Javert-like villain, and Vincent Lindon is vivid as the psychotic inmate that villain manipulates against our hero. This isn't a serious indictment of justice or the prison system so much as just a character-driven thriller, and as such it's satisfying. Some of the music on the English-dubbed print I saw is a bit inappropriate, though-too heavy on wailing 80s guitars and not focused enough on heightening suspense.
  • franzerik5 February 2007
    "L'Addition" is a worthless film about a man wrongfully accused. What tripe!

    Each and every situation in this film is irresponsibly contrived, and not a single scene or any of the details are even slightly believable.

    In itself, I can understand someone writing a story on a subject in which one has very little knowledge but how this story got all the way to "the finished cinematic stage" (without getting axed by sensible proof-reading) is beyond me.

    The embarrassing dialog in this film might be suitable for an American film but I just can't believe that this film is French! Not that France hasn't made its' own share of idiotic films as well, but it's normally done so in its' own, unique French way - not in the American "believe anything we tell you" cliché-ish character fashion.

    Richard Bohringer has never impressed me. His sinister "whispering voice" (which is popular in Italo/American Mafia movies) is old stuff, and he does just as little to heighten my appreciation of this film as he has done in any of the other films in which I've seen him.

    On the other hand, I consider Richard Berry to be a very good actor and it is hard to fathom why he ever accepted a role in this crap. He's capable of making much better films than this. As a matter of fact Richard Berry's acting in "L'Addition" is the only thing I can say good about the film. But don't be mistaken into believing that his performance makes this film worth watching. It is not. "L'Addition" can only be tolerated by placing corks into your ears and a blindfold over your eyes…but then you'd have no reason to shove the thing into your DVD/VCR player in the first place.

    This film is a completely unmotivated piece of trash.