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He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not (2002) – DVD Review

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not DVD


Written by Laetitia Colombani & Caroline Thivel
Directed by Laetitia Colombani
Starring Audrey Tautou, Samuel Le Bihan, Sophie Guillemin, Clément Sibony, Isabelle Carré

Released by: Miramax.
Rating: R
Region: 1
Anamorphic: Yes.
My Advice: Rent it.

Ah, to be young and in love in the springtime. An up and coming artist, Angélique (Tautou), is swept up in a grand passion. The object of that passion is a successful and married cardiologist, Loïc Le Garrec (Le Bihan). Of course her best friend Héloïse (Guillemin) and David (Sibony, who suffers in unrequited love for Angélique) tell her Loïc is no good for her. He keeps breaking their dates, even bailing on a romantic trip to Florence. Angélique still stays true to her love even with the doctor’s wife Rachel (Carré) being pregnant. But when she loses the baby, Angélique’s prayers seem to be “answered”. However, when Loïc is accused of sexually assaulting a patient, Angélique knows what she must do for love.

[ad#longpost]At its core, this movie’s plot is the standard “erotic thriller” along the same lines as Fatal Attraction (on the high side of the genre) and Swimfan (on the low side). Most of you could probably guess what’s going to happen next and figure out the big twist of the movie. But it is the execution of this plot that puts it above the maddening crowd.

First off, there is the casting of Audrey Tautou (of Amélie fame. When casting the “bad girl,” producers usually go for an actress who can be sexy and slutty. Tautou looks so cute and innocent that you can’t imagine that anything is wrong with her character. When she smiles, she looks near angelic, all sweetness and light. She does, however, subtly let the mask slip and you can just see the chaos and madness behind her eyes that will cause so much havoc. Another difference is how the movie divides itself between both Angélique’s and Loïc’s perspectives regarding the same period of time. It’s interesting how both experience the same event yet take away completely different impressions. When they meet in a bathroom, he thinks it’s simply a friendly exchange while she attaches so much more importance. Even with these innovations, you can tell this is director Colombani’s first effort.

The rest of the cast comes off as bland especially when compared to Tautou’s star power. Colombani should have compensated for that. The symbolism she employs is also indicative of a first time director. The home where Angélique’s is house sitting becomes messier and messier as she falls further apart. The house also has a rare plant in a special container that she destroys after Loïc supposedly stands her up one too many times. Hopefully Colombani will become more skilled in the future because she does show promise.

Audrey Tautou from He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not DVD

Irritatingly, there are no extras on this disc. Even more irritating is the fact that from the UK, I could buy a Region 0 disc with alternate endings, deleted scenes, an interview with Tautou and more. Of course, there are rights issues and such that get in the way of such things…but I don’t care. If it exists, and I don’t have it, I get pissy about it. I would like to have heard the reasons Tautou took this role and why Colombani went with the innovations in the movie. Still, the movie is interesting and Tautou is cute enough to warrant renting He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not.

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