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INTIMATE STRANGERS ...

... is a movie I thoroughly enjoyed and would recommend to anyone. Here's what Yahoo Movies says about the plot line:

 

"A disturbed-looking woman named Anna enters a Paris apartment building where white-collar professionals conduct business from their homes. The concierge--whose chronic involvement in a dopey soap opera is a wink to the melodrama at work in ordinary lives--tells her that Dr. Monnier's practice is on the fifth floor. Anna takes the elevator, chooses a door and is admitted by William, whose secretary has left for the day. Obviously upset, Anna explains it's an emergency. With minimum prompting from William, she quickly reveals she's been married for four years and works in an upscale luggage boutique. Her husband is unemployed, and, although their love life was formerly quite satisfying, they haven't had sex for six months. She thinks she's going crazy. Talking seems to make Anna feel better and she spontaneously proposes a date and time for their next appointment. She then leaves without having given her name or phone number and although he does have a couch in his office and there was a book about psychoanalysis on his desk, William is actually a financial planner specializing in tax problems. Psychiatrist Dr. Monnier, whom Anna meant to see, has an office a few doors down on the same floor. Jeanne, who's traded in the unassuming and fastidious William for outgoing hulk Luc, tells her former love that he must come clean. But although William does his level best to remedy the misunderstanding, Anna doesn't let him get a word in edgewise on her subsequent visit as she spills ever more intimate details about her private life."

 

In the past few weeks, I've watched three foreign films for each American made film and even though I rely on English sub-titles to understand the story, I am still captivated by the better quality of man of the foreign films. This one is French and I had my sound on all the time becuase facial movement and body language are supreme to the authenticity of Intimate Strangers and listening to cultivated French is very much like listening to good music. Do yourself a favor and buy or rent the movie.

 

Cast

Sandrine Bonnaire – Anna

Fabrice Luchini – William

Michel Duchaussoy – Dr. Monnier

Anne Brochet – Jeanne

Gilbert Melki – Marc

Laurent Gamelon – Luc

Hélène Surgère – Mrs. Mulon

 

Again, let me say, in my opinion this is a delightful movie, well worth seeing. The sexual content which is only presneted as conversation. I believe there may have been one affectionate kiss on the cheek in the whole movie. I finished the movie feeling like a friend of both Anna and William.

 

I read a number of reviews of the movie and was amazed at the critics who panned the movie with sarcasm and that Rex Reed "nose in the air" attitude as if someone had smeared a small amount of Limburger cheese on their upper lip. Some called it a mystery. This movie is light humor, delightful all the way through, but hardly a "belly laugh" anywhere in the content. The feel of the movie reminded me of "Breakfast at Tiffnay's." The only element of "a mystery" was in the threats of violence made by Anna's husband toward William, but just like in real life, most threats are just that, threats. If you read between the lines, some of the negative reviews came from critics who were simply prejudiced against French movies as a whole.

 

One of the brilliant minute exchanges in the film is the action of the psychiatrist, who knows that William by his lack of response has come very close to stepping over the line and practicing medicine without a license. The psychiatrist simply charges William 120 Euros for the conservation, making William a patient and of course we know about doctor-patient confidentiality.

 

To be continued ...

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Taken on December 17, 2009