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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

And Now... Ladies And Gentlemen (2002)

A professional jewel thief and master of disguise (Jeremy Irons) has serious blackouts which may be an indication of a brain tumor. A jazz chanteuse (Patricia Kaas) recovering from a romantic break up is having similar blackouts. Fate sets up a meeting for them in Morocco. This romantic drama from director Claude Lelouch (A MAN AND A WOMAN) has a premise that is filled with possibilities of which few are met. Instead, not content to focus his story on the two main characters, Lelouch pads out the simple storyline with extraneous characters and situations which not only detract from the central story but often have no payoff (like the boxer and his wife). I can't help but feel that hard as he tries, Irons is simply miscast. He's best at playing darkly ambiguous characters like REVERSAL OF FORTUNE or DEAD RINGERS, a romantic leading man he's not. Kaas, on the other hand, is marvelous. A popular French singer, this is her only film. There's a better movie here struggling to get out but if nothing else, it's worth seeing for Kaas who sings several songs with wonderful arrangements by Robin Millar. Music by Michel Legrand. With Claudia Cardinale as an Italian countess, Thierry Lhermitte (in the film's worst performance), Alessandra Martines, Jean Marie Bigard in a dual role and Yvan Attal.

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