PopEntertainment.com

It's all the entertainment you need!

 

FEATURE STORIES MOVIE REVIEWS MUSIC REVIEWS BOX SET REVIEWS TV SHOWS ON DVD CONTESTS CONCERT PHOTOS

 

 

  FEATURE STORIES
  INTERVIEWS A TO E
  INTERVIEWS F TO J
  INTERVIEWS K TO O
  INTERVIEWS P TO T
  INTERVIEWS U TO Z
  INTERVIEWS ACTORS
  INTERVIEWS ACTRESSES
  INTERVIEWS BOOKS
  INTERVIEWS DIRECTORS AND SCREENWRITERS
  INTERVIEWS MUSIC
  INTERVIEWS OSCAR NOMINEES
  INTERVIEWS THEATER
  IN MEMORIAM
  REVIEWS
  MOVIE REVIEWS
  MUSIC REVIEWS
  CONCERT REVIEWS
  BOX SET REPORT CARD
  TV SHOWS ON DVD
  MISCELLANEOUS STUFF & NONSENSE
  CONCERT PHOTOGRAPHY
  LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
  CONTESTS
  LINKS
  MASTHEAD
  EMAIL US

"WILD YEARS-THE MUSIC & MYTH OF TOM WAITS" BY JAY S. JACOBS

AVAILABLE IN BOOK STORES EVERYWHERE!

 

www.wbshop.com

PopEntertainment.com > Reviews > Movie Reviews > My Best Friend (Mon Meilleur Ami)

MOVIE REVIEWS

MY BEST FRIEND (MON MEILLEUR AMI) (2007)

Starring Daniel Auteuil, Dany Boon, Julie Gayet, Julie Durand, Jacques Mathou, Henri Garcin, Pierre Aussedat, Audrey Marnay, Cyril Couton, Elisabeth Bourgine, Jacques Spiesser and Marie Pillet.

Screenplay by Jerome Tonnerre and Patrice Leconte.

Directed by Patrice Leconte.

Distributed by IFC Pictures.  94 minutes.  Rated PG-13.

My Best Friend (Mon Meilleur Ami)

Though he doesn't usually get mentioned in the same breath as Scorcese, Spielberg, Polanski, Tarantino or Coppola, Patrice Leconte is one of the most consistently brilliant directors currently working in film.  This French auteur has a sure hand with drama, comedy, period pieces, love stories and tragedies.

My Best Friend is the 36th film in Leconte's career -- a career which spans almost 40 years. Several of those are true classics, Monsieur Hire (1988) and The Man on the Train (2003) come immediately to mind.  Others are more earthbound.  However, almost all are worth seeing.

My Best Friend is kind of a whimsical trifle for Leconte, but he has as sure a hand with a soufflé as he does with a full meal.

Daniel Auteuil -- who isn't in every French film made, though it sometimes feels that way -- plays Francois, a Paris antiquities dealer who is so driven and hard-edged in his work that he is willing to negotiate a purchase with a widow during her husband's funeral.  One day, when out for dinner with a bunch of his best friends, he is told that none of them actually consider him to be a friend.  A business partner, a lover, an acquaintance, perhaps -- but not a friend. 

Francois bristles at the suggestion that he has no friends and ends up making a wager with his business partner Catherine (Julie Gayet) -- either he introduce them all to a legitimate best friend within ten days or he will forfeit an ancient Greek vase which he had just bought at auction for an astounding amount -- an amount which has literally put their business in jeopardy.

Therefore, Francois goes out clumsily looking to find friends: visiting childhood acquaintances, hanging out in cafés and approaching strangers, even taking an adult education seminar on making connections with people.

Honestly it is a little hard to believe that he has so much trouble making friends.  Yes, he is kind of self-absorbed and all about business, but he is charming, sophisticated, an excellent talker and a good listener. He should be able to find someone in his past or present who does not despise him.

Eventually Francois meets an excessively chatty and outgoing cab driver named Bruno (Dany Boon).  Francois offers to hire Bruno to teach him how to be more open to friendship.  While the cabbie is a little standoffish to the idea at first -- he feels it is a natural state, not something that can be learned -- eventually he takes on the challenge. 

The two drive around Paris and the cabbie critiques the businessman's technique.  Eventually they begin to bond more and more to the point that Francois realizes that the answer may be right in front of him.  Then, when getting proof that Bruno is a true friend who would do anything for him, Francois inadvertently-but-thoughtlessly tramples over the feelings of his new ami

My Best Friend is essentially a comedy (with some rather dramatic parts), so you are relatively sure that the hardened businessman will learn from his mistakes and try to make everything right.  This leads to a rather convoluted scheme which includes insurance companies, family and friends and the French version of Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?

Like I said before, a little lightweight for this talented filmmaker.  Still, second-tier Patrice Leconte is better than most directors' A games, so it is still a very worthy addition to an impressive body of work.

Jay S. Jacobs

Copyright ©2007 PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved.  Posted: August 3, 2007.

Enter Gotham City with Batman Costumes from Spirit Halloween! Protect or destroy the city as Batgirl, Robin, or the Joker. Shop now!

RETURN TO MOVIE REVIEWS MENU

Copyright ©2007   PopEntertainment.com.  All rights reserved.  Posted: August 3, 2007.