Après Vous

Rated R 2005

A great many contemporary French comedies are male buddy-buddy scenarios in which mismatched personalities are thrown together, usually within a confined space such as a car or an apartment. More often than not, one character is an incompetent idiot and the other, out of kindness, stupidity, necessity, or a sense of superiority, attempts to "help" the first man, only to be slowly brought down to his level of ineptitude. Overly long and annoying at almost every turn, director/co-writer Pierre Salvadori's new film proves an absolute chore to sit through -- a view not shared by French audiences, who made it one of the year's big hits. Daniel Auteuil stars as Antoine, a waiter at an upscale restaurant who stops a complete stranger from committing suicide over a romantic breakup. The ungrateful Louis (Jose Garcia) becomes an albatross around Antoine's neck. Complicating matters further, Antoine's attempt to reunite the former lovers falters when he himself falls for the woman in question. As Clare Booth Luce remarked, "No good deed goes unpunished."

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