A French man spies on a lovely younger woman across the way. When he's spotted by the woman shortly after being questioned by the police about a local murder, the man simple life becomes more complicated.
A spellbinding psychological drama adapted from one of the master of the forms novels, Patrice Leconte tells a love story, a tale of obsession and a murder investigation with some of the most beautiful mise-en-scene you'll ever see. It's the kind of sensuous film Perfume should have been.
A short film about a weird man
Patrice Leconte adapts the same material as in Julien Duvivier's Panique. First time I came across Leconte was with his magnificent La fille sur le pont, a movie I can't recommend highly enough, and I've been itching to get deeper into his catalog ever since.
This is a short feature film (85 min), and yet Leconte manage to combine a character study with the story at hand. It's very well acted. Especially Michel Blanc --as Mr. Hire-- is excellent, but also Sandrine Bonnaire is excellent cast and truly captures the essence of Alice with her presence.
It's also fascinating and intriguing, uses music very well, and is well shot. A really enjoyable experience, and I'll definitely not wait as long again before my next encounter with a Leconte movie.
Monsieur Hire was watched to check it off my TOTAGA-list.
Monsieur Hire (Michel Blanc) keeps himself to himself and is thought slightly strange by his neighbours, who think it is likely he was responsible for the murder of a young girl. He has been watching Alice (Sandrine Bonnaire) and her boyfriend Emile for some time, but has fallen deeply in love with her. He follows them, and he is in turn followed by the police who believe, like the neighbours that Monsieur Hire's oddness makes him prime candidate to be the murderer.
This is an excellent film, with unexpected twists that make one have to reassess the motivations of all of the characters.
Having a hard time with this one. Good filmmaking, great storytelling. Interesting and unique characters. But I certainly didn't love it...
Gentle but beguiling voyeur mystery drama. Heavy ellipsis keeps you on your toes and the meticulous sketching of the title character is fascinating. The mice, the bowling, the perfume, the record: all allow the viewer to begin to see who Hire is without clumsily chiseling him out.
Could easily run with an allegorical reading and say that Hire is cinema, that he's of the senses. That he doesn't hurt anybody but he does see sin and let you know that it's been seen, that no matter how carefully he tries to reflect the sins of people back at them to realize their errors they'll only blame him. Dunno if that would make the film better or worse, however.
Great film. Fine performances.
A suspenseful voyeuristic film in the style of Polanski and Hitchcock. I would watch this again just for the skating and boxing scenes. A real sensory treat.
I see you
Film noir for the arthouse set, with a familiar story for anyone the least bit familiar with the genre. I drew a comparison to Scarlet Street, itself an adaption of a Renoir film from the 30s. You can probably think of several more. This is made unique with the air of sophistication you'd expect from late 80s European cinema (it looks like a Merchant Ivory film) and a sympathetic protagonist, who will, to those familiar with basement dwelling misanthropes, be instantly recognizable. He's a society-shunning voyeur whose regimented and prim manner of living leaves him open to the ridicule of nearly everyone he comes into contact with. His claims to be above it all aren't convincing; he's the kind of…
A simple, yet wonderful modern French adaptation from one of the uncountable great novels that Georges Simenon ever wrote. Cute and heartwarming, yet depressing and reflexive romantic drama. Awesome ending if I might add.
P.D. A scheduled rewatch is necessary.
Film #57 of June 2013 Challenge
There were several elements of this film that I was not expecting. I anticipated that this would be a crime thriller, but it turned out to be an unconventional love story. I expected the character of Monsieur Hire to be a cold heartless individual, but deeper inspection proved that he is a compassionate and feeling individual. His neighbor Alice seemed to be victim of circumstances, but she ends of being a complicit player in the turn of events. Although these surprises were refreshing to see in a film, the overall effect was less than satisfying.
It all gets a touch too melodramatic near the end which is disappointing as the other Leconte films I've seen have always managed to stay just to the right side of that line but mostly rights itself with a very satisfying final scene. I appreciated the film making a real human being of a character who is usually a menacing (or comedic/pathetic) one-dimensional plot point in most other films. Blanc plays Hire with just the right amount of humanity for such a withdrawn character though one must fault Sandrine Bonnaire for constantly making me ask myself if Kira Sedgwick was perhaps fluent in French.