Thursday, 25 August 2011

La Doublure - The Valet

2006 by Francis Veber - French

It is not easy for me to remember names, even the ones from daily life. When discussing films, if at all people ask me for the names of directors and all, I wont be able to answer immediately in most cases. And especially when it comes to names outside USA and UK, when the names are not easy for me, it is even difficult. But I dont think I can easily forget the name of Francis Veber. I watched La Diner de Cons (which was remade in India as Bheja Fry) and Le Closet, and felt this man is a maestro in making classic comedies. He just substantiates my belief with La Doublure.

A billionaire CEO has a super model mistress. One Paparazzi photographs them together, an ordinary man too got inside the frame by accident, and the CEO's wife is out to prove the story. To save his marriage, the billionaire picks up the ordinary guy and pays the supermodel too, to act as couples, to convince his wife. The ordinary guy, working as a valet, in fact is let down by his old time girl friend, who rejected his marriage proposal. 

An incredible plot for a romantic comedy. As it progress, it only turns brilliantly funny.

I would say, it is actually a study of men. There is a man who is cheating both his wife and also his mistress, the way he cheats them both is typical of rich men. He is quite confused about whom to keep but what he is sure about is his love for money. His final preference is weighed down by his goal to remain a billionaire CEO and husband. At the same time, there is also this ordinary man, a pure example of man who loves his girl than anything. He has got this unbelievable opportunity to live with a supermodel, a beautiful woman for whom any man would do anything, but he still remains loyal to his girl friend, without any hope of her accepting his proposal, but still is nice to the super model. It only adds to the brilliance of this script that there are two occassions when through actions and dialogues he is shown as an ordinary man, not any saint. Also there is this friend of the Valet, who is a perfect example of a male friend, jealous, creepy and everything. This character was really funny.

At the same time, it is also brilliant with its female characters, especially the wife of the billionaire. Her happiness in giving any sorts of pain to her cheating husband gives us some wonderful laughs. The girl friend is quite typical, but the supermodel is quite different and is brilliant. In fact, she is quite a revelation. Of course, it is clear it must be only money what attracted her to a much older billionaire, but she behaves quite normal and her relationship with the guy is really nice. There is also this hilarious scenes involving a doctor, who ends up taking treatment himself, at the patients home, and still charging the patient.

Of course, this could be considered an out of the world plot or unbelievable one, but the script is brilliant and Veber ensures that all this could be quite happening. The movie is quite fast and sleek. Just that, it ends even before you have not had enough of these wonderful characters. Yes, to be frank, I really felt the movie could have been a bit longer. It is only once in a blue moon I wish oh, this movie should not be ending. Doublure is so nice and charming.

Daniel Auteuil, as the billionaire, reinstates his acting prowess. For Gad Elmaleh, the role is only slightly different from that of Hors de prix, but he is nice. I was quite charmed by Alice Taglioni as the super model. Agreed, she doesn't have much to act here, but her presence is brilliant.

A very funny movie indeed. For me, it is not just a funny movie, because it is very rare for me to wish a movie didn't end at all. I loved this movie.