Annette ★★★

It's been a while since auteur film maker Leos Carax last mystified his audience with his oblique cinema. Here he tells the story of stand-up comedian, Henry, a bitter Steven Wright type (another weird performance by Adam Driver), living in a Frenchman's noir version of Los Angeles. Henry is in love with opera diva Ann (Marion Cotillard), and they have a strange child, Annette (played convincingly for most of the film by a puppet). With those characters, Carax spins a fractured fable of fame, fortune and fate. It's all atmosphere, something of a specialty of Carax. I can't say I enjoyed the experience; but at least I was mesmerized enough to stay interested.

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