A film by Jean-François Hensgens, François Troukens
Cast: Olivier Gourmet, Lubna Azabal, Kevin Janssens
English title: Above the law.
A criminal who escape prison who is going to plan one last heist and get out for ever. He performs his heist without a hitch but has as soon as it is started it is doom to fail.
Here the real translation is Killers. It is the first feature for the two director Jean-François Hensgens, François Troukens. The protagonist, Frank Valken (Olivier Gourmet), a robber, has just pulled off yet another masterful robbery without a hitch. At least that is what he thinks , but soon after the cops knows his every move. He gets pinched which is the ideal suspect for a bunch of murders that happens 30 years ago. Of course Frank knows he is set up. The film includes the Belgium’s most famous criminal incidents at the heart of its narrative. The Brabant Killers, which was much talked about in the 1980s. Responsible for some fifteen break-ins, the Brabant Killers, who had a preference for supermarkets, did not care about leaving bodies in their wake (almost thirty victims), killing children and seniors. To this day, there are still doubts about the identity of the murderers, and some see it as more than a simple crime, but as a state affair some others thinks that the CIA as something to do with that.
The directors here plunge right in the old gangsters school film doing a heist where the robbers does not kill anybody just takes them hostage. Frank believe that he is not a killer a man of principle old school like I said. The film maintain its integrity and knows that along the way there is going to be one way out is killing is going to take place.
The film follows Olivier Gourmet who fit the role perfectly well I do not care what film he is in but I will see all his film eventually I am trying to catch up and what a terrific actor he turned out to be, which he is trying to save his skin and his honour. The rest of the cast is on it as well which brings me that this casting is so perfect it is not even funny. First features for the directors and they did not disappoint. I can’t wait until the next film.
A film by Gérard Pautonnier
Cast: Jean-Pierre Bacri, Arthur Dupont, Féodor Atkine, Olivier Gourmet
English: Extreme cold (But the title is going to be Back in business)
In a small town in the middle of nowhere, Edmond Zweck’s business is almost going to of business. The company now has only two employees: Georges, Zweck’s right-hand man and Eddy (Jean-Pierre Bacri) and, a young man still novice in the trade. One fine morning, however, a dead man and his family arrives. And they are back in business . Georges and Eddy are responsible for leading the deceased to his last abode. But in search of the cemetery that can not be found, the funeral convoy goes astray and the journey turns into a fiasco.
For his first feature film, Gérard Pautonnier makes the daring bet to amuse us with the most frightening subject for us poor mortals that is called death and he succeeds hands down! Adapting the novel of Joël Egloff Edmond Ganglion & fils, he keeps the tone squeaky and offbeat and drags us into a deadly road-movie that is not fatal. If the rhythm is uneven, an unpredictable scenario and an upscale casting with a comedy who has a welcoming originality. In an unlikely setting in an European small city where there not too many habitants in a vast desert like a western where some colourful characters are going to surface. And that is what makes all the charm of this film. “Death is not contagious, it is hereditary” as one character said in the film, here is a film that will worm your heart sort of speak. This film is going to give you a sunburn on the glittering subject of death.
A film by Gilles Legrand
Cast: Olivier Gourmet, Georgia Scalliet, Dimitri Storoge
English: The smell of Mandarin
Summer 1918. The war rages for another few months, but to Charles and Angela, it’s already over. He, cavalry officer has one leg. She, her home care nurse, has just lost the love of her life, the father to her baby daughter. United by the need to rebuild, they establish a joyful complicity that brings them back to life. At the insistence of Charles, Angela accepts a marriage of convenience. They will go to war against themselves and against each other before accepting the evidence of the passion that binds them despite themselves.
Can we desire without loving? Here is a young nurse who needs a job who has a daughter and the war in not so far away. He needs a nurse to take care of him due to his loss of one leg during the war. He finally gets out of bed and even goes back on horse back riding thanks to her. they are funny together and life starts to get good again for both of them. When Charles (Olivier Gourmet) ask Angèle (Georgia scalliet) in marriage. Here is the really kicker there is condition in the marriage you see Angèle is not in love with Charles but she will marry him under certain conditions and the list is long. There is humor though out this film big time and it raises the question if giving time can we really love someone. Beautiful film, extremely well film with some drop dead gorgeous scenery. A film that is well written with humor and intelligence. Olivier Gourmet here shines big time and the choice of film with this actor is amazing. He si busy as hell those days. Georgia Scalliet first time I saw here has done a terrific job here she stand on her ground in the front of Olivier. Film buffs who loves beautiful love stories will surely sensitive to the speech of the director that you will not find in most film those days.
A film by Pierre Jolivet
Cast: Olivier Gourmet, Valérie Bonneton, Marc Zinga
English translation: Not on your life.
Frank (Olivier Gourmet) a security guard at night watches over a supermarket. He has a monotone life work, sleep eat, work….Not too much in his life is going on. Until one day he notices something. He investigate a little more and decided to do the unthinkable.
Here is a man without hope nor future who will have to work until his 70’s ( Retirement age in France is 62 ) and still will have nothing too much in his pension plan to survive. A little romance is flourishing with the social worker. The world that he does his without a future, it’s boring. Those that he meet are just coming and going Ketu a young man played by Marc Zinga who is the objet go the collateral damages in the story. Finally Mylène (Valérie Bonneton) which meets regularly Franck to evaluate his job and his professional future. From there will be someone hurt with a knife, some gun fire, a pair of pants will ripped, cars will collide. There is not emergency exit here it is going to get rough and it is all going downhill. Happy ending yeah! right. It is a film like the Dardennes brothers makes but darker like a film noir.
A film by Frédéric Tellier
Cast: Raphaël Personnaz, Nathalie Baye, Olivier Gourmet
This is the true story of Guy George, the Dossier SK1 from The early 80’s till 1997. The named it SK1 Serial Killer Number 1. Back in the early 80’s a series of rape and murder has been found its way in Paris. For years the police at the 36 Quai des Orfèvres has been trying to catch him and finally succeeded. Guy has been charge with the rape and murders has gotten life in prison. The movie is about the work of the 36 Quai Des Orfèvres (a french and famous investigation bureau), from the first murder, to the trial. Frank Magne (Raphaël Personnaz) is the investigator who at the beginning stubble into the file of this unsolved case. You see when you are the new guy at the Quai Des Orfèvres you get the unsolved case as a detective told him a pair of fresh eyes on this files. He begins to investigate a little more. You see the killer stops for about 3 years and then nothing. Suddenly he begins to kill again. Frank dedicated himself to the chase of this invisible murderer. Frank had a lot perseverance, passion, anger and motivation to catch this killer. Well played by Raphaël Personnaz. Nathalie Baye has done a great performance here. Of course Olivier Gourmet (great first name) a veteran here has done very well. Adama Niane who plays Guy George played it right. At first He didn’t know why he was arrested so he said and gradually little by little he begins to unveil the face of a killer. His performance was genuine to a T. Take a look at this one it is quiet good.
In french only.
A film by Régis Wargnier
Cast: Raphaël Personnaz, Phoeung Kompheak, Olivier Gourmet
English title: The gate.
From the book by François Bizot his memoirs. A French ethnologist is capture by Khmer Rouge an army in Cambodia. Prisoner for 4 months than released by his guardian Douch later known for executed 13000 people. It is the unusual relationship of the 2 men that director Regis Wargnier was interested in. Douch ( Phoeung Kompheak) relate to his prisoner and even tries to help him but François Bizot (Raphaël Personnaz) tries everything to get out of prisoner camp. Why Douch wants to save him? Because Douch believe in Bizot innocence? It is because he is the only one with whom Duch can exchange quotes on his ideology? The answer remains elusive, surely because the narrator himself does not know it The film has a slow pace, and manages to capture us and takes us into the history of these two men. Since it is a slow-paced film many of you might not like this film knowing the American audiences out there but keep in mind it is the relationship of those 2 men that is developing over the years. You see most of the time when this kind of things happens the guardian is tough on his prisoners they try to break them but nott there like I said they have an unusual kind of relationship. The cinematographer capture the raw life in Cambodia like it was back then and I think like now days. The landscapes and scenery are beautiful and realistic. Kompheak Phoeung who plays Douch shines here, he integrated the character perfectly well and flawlessly no wonder He was the French translator at the trial of Duch. Like he said one time I have no choice it is procedure. Raphaël Personnaz has done well here as well he lost 20 pounds for the role. The director did not put out the violence on how he killed the 13000 people by torturing them or just have them shot. No music there just because it is a tense film and it does not need it. It could be frustrating for some this film because you want more or there is some question that you will have that is not answered in the film, but overall I like this film it standout well.
Sorry in French only
A film by Martin Provost
Cast: Emmanuelle Devos, Sandrine Kiberlain, Olivier Gourmet
Violette Leduc, born a bastard at the beginning of last century, meets Simone de Beauvoir in the years after the war in St-Germain-des-Prés. Then begins an intense relationship between the two women that will last throughout the rest of their lives. A quest for freedom by freely writing about anything as Simone pushes Viollette to write because she sees a talented writer.
This film is a biography of Violette Leduc. It starts like this, The fake marriage to writer Maurice Sachs to neither’s benefit. Him a homosexual, her a bisexual, yeah that is going to do it. But Maurice leaves her and said that he will be back. Yeah right. The flash of motivation comes when Leduc discovers Simone de Beauvoir devouring her works, writing her own biography and seeking encouragement from the woman that becomes her mentor. You see Leduc was a bastard meaning her parents weren’t married her father left her mother when she was young so she struggles and thought because of it she will not be loved and she will not succeed at anything until she meet Simone were she pushes her to write about her life. Here is the thing Violette was ahead of her time because back then no one would write about their sexuality let along her bisexuality. She would right honestly as possible about her life. Devos and Kiberlain are excellent as they navigate towards awkward topics and situations. Violette is a vision sumptuousness amplified by the skills of cinematographer, Yves Cape. Devos embraced the character beautifully well.