Director/co-writer Eric Lartigau’s film “The Big Picture” poses a knotted series of problems regarding identity, anonymity and fame. More a theoretical interrogation than a richly delivered story, the plot begins with self-satisfied Parisian lawyer Paul Exben slow to realize his wife Sarah has enjoyed an affair with long-time friend Grégoire and now wants a divorce.
Webster University and Cinema St. Louis’ Classic French Film Festival continues this Thursday, July 21st, through Sunday, July 24th, with two films directed by Jacques Demy—Peau d’ane/Donkey Skin and Les Parapluies du Cherbourg/The Umbrellas of Cherbourg—one with his wife Agnes Varda—Les Demoiselles de Rochefort/The Young Girls of Rochefort—and one by director Claude Chabrol—Les Cousins/The Cousins.
Beginning appropriately on July 14th, Bastille Day, Cinema St. Louis and Webster University's Film Series launch the Third Annual Classic French Film Festival. Over three weeks, the festival will present twelve films, each screening once. Seven great French directors are represented: Francois Truffaut, Claude Chabrol, Jean-Luc Godard, Jacques Demy, Agnes Varda, Robert Bresson, and Jean-Paul Rappeneau.
In its attempt to make serious points and to entertain, farce faces a challenge. It must maintain a delicate balance: playfully mock its exaggerated subject while avoiding cruelty or a level of serious indictment that would qualify its humor. The French showcase their expertise at this in director Francois Ozon's Potiche starring Catherine Deneuve with Gerard Depardieu and Fabrice Luchine.