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Delicatessen

France 1990
produced by
Claudie Ossard for Constellation, Union Générale Cinématographique, Hachette Première, Sofinergie, Investimage, Fondation GAN pour le Cinéma, Victoires Productions
directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Marc Caro
starring Dominique Pinon, Marie-Laure Dougnac, Jean-Claude Dreyfus, Karin Viard, Ticky Holgado, Anne-Marie Pisani, Boban Janevski, Mikael Todde, Edith Ker, Rufus, Jacques Mathou, Howard Vernon, Pascal Benezech, Chick Ortega, Silvie Laguna, Jean-Francois Perrier, Dominique Zardi, Patrick Paroux, Maurice Lamy, Marc Caro
written by Gilles Adrien, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Marc Caro, music by Carlos D'Alessio

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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After the big catatrophe (and thankfully, the movie never bores us with any details of that catastrophe - it would have ruined the film anyways) people try to cope with the problems of life afterwards, for example famine: Jean-Claude Dreyfus, landlord of one of the few appartment buildings sitll standing (if only just) & butcher, does so by every now & again butchering his respective janitor. But when his daughter (Marie-Laure Dougnac) falls for their new janitor (Dominique Pinon), a former circus clown, the carefully kept - if bloody - order of the building gets out of balance. So, when said daughter hires a group of bumbling resistance fighters to rescue him from her father's blades, chaos ensues, with many of the episodically told stories of the other tenants reaching their culminations, until butcher Dreyfus, along with a few hungry tenants, has Marie-Laure Dougnac & Dominique Pinon cornered in a bathroom where both floor & ceiling break away, but in the end Dreyfus ends with a blade stuck through his forehead that was intended for Pinon.

 

Even though this might sound like science fiction, this is done pretty much in retro-style, circa 1950's, with the storytelling definitely bordering the absurd. & even though the movie is sometimes style over substance (some of the circus-like performances of Pinon for example are just a tad too long, actually slowing the movies pace), in all, this is just a great fun movie. 

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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