Tuesday, 22 December 2009


Now Showing
Palace Films

This film has been billed as a Gallic version of American Pie, a ploy no doubt cooked up as the result of some marketing brainstorm: how do we attract teen audiences away from Sherlock Holmes or their second or third viewing of Avatar? With the promise of bawdy teen sex, that's how!

That's more of a tease than a promise as there is no bawdy sex in The French Kissers, French animator Riad Sattouf's directorial debut. But the “heroes” of Sattouf's film, Herve and Camel (and if you think his name is unfortunate, you should see his hair), are quite crude. They are also not from Hollywood central casting. Bad clothes, bad hair and pimply faces, they make their American counterparts look like virtual Hugh Heffners in comparison.

Crude, too, is Sattouf's direction. A simple point and shoot style to accompany his deceptively simple tale of teenagers and their number one preoccupation. But The French Kissers eventually wins you over with its charm. Will Herve (Vincent Lacoste) do the same with popular girl Aurore (Alice Tremolieres)? I'm not one to kiss and tell.

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