Marion Cotillard's performance as iconic French chanteuse Edith Piaf is the main, but not the only, reason to see this seductively nostalgic biopic. Writer-director Olivier Dahan (Already Dead) gives the proceedings a show-bizzy American tilt, but Piaf's Gallic working-class roots are showing. She and the film are at their best when Piaf is making her hardscrabble way up from the Parisian gutter to the heights, as a singer of international hit torch songs in the 1940s and '50s, while Cotillard lip-synchs. Americans typically found Piaf too sad; the movie shows how she got that way. Costarring Sylvie Testud, Emmanuelle Seigner, and Jean-Pierre Martins (as Piaf's boxer lover), and beautifully shot by Tetsuo Nagata.
Director: Olivier Dahan
Writer: Olivier Dahan and Isabelle Sobelman
Producer: Alain Goldman and Timothy Burrill
Cast: Marion Cotillard, Clotilde Courau, Jean-Paul Rouve, Sylvie Testud, Pascal Greggory, Jean-Pierre Martins, Emmanuelle Seigner, Gérard Depardieu, Catherine Allégret, Caroline Sihol, Alban Casterman, Marc Barbé, Manon Chevallier, Pauline Burlet and Farida Amrouche