A film by Xavier Giannoli
Cast: Catherine Frot, André Marcon, Denis Mpunga
Set in 1920 and loosely inspired by the life of infamous soprano Florence Foster Jenkins. The main characters are wannabe who are trapped in their own delusions. Marguerite Dumont (Catherine Frot) is an untalented opera singer who believes she has a wonderful voice, regularly performing for her aristocratic friends and behaving like a diva for her photographers.
Marguerite’s rendition of Mozart’s Queen of the Night is excruciating to listen too, her voice is out of whack and people usually listen uncomfortably with a fake smile or try to keep a straight face while she finishes her performance. She is tone-death but thinks she is a great singer and to top it all off none of her friends tells her the truth. Her own husband fake a car break down so he does not have to listen to her. Confident in her talent, she allows young music critic Lucien (Sylvain Dieuaide) and Dadaist and provocateur Aubert (Kyrill Von Priest) to involve her in anarchic cabaret performances where Marguerite ‘sings’ the French national anthem unaware that she is ridiculed. She is a woman who has a dream and has no talent to achieve it and she is unaware that her singing is atrocious. She tales singing lessons with the declining maestro Atos Pezzini (Michel Fau), a has-been who teaches her the basic rules of singing but soon finds out that don’t matter what he teaches her it will not work. She attempt to do a final show in public this time. The thing is will she succed or realized that she can’t sing?
Here is a woman determined to succeed but in caught in her own delusions, even if people will tell her the truth she will not believe it. She is so far out there that you can’t bring her back to reality. Marguerite is an enjoyable comedy with hints of dark satire with melodrama where Catherine Frot shines.