Un Air De Famille

  • 1996
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Comedy, Drama

French filmmaker Cedric Klapisch's smooth blend of comedy and family drama isn't nearly as delightful as last summer's WHEN THE CAT'S AWAY. But then it's not exactly trying to be. It's an adaptation of a successful play about a dysfunctional French family -- from the opinionated matriarch (Claire Maurier) and her 30ish unmarried daughter Betty (Agnes Jaoui)...read more

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Reviewed by Sandra Contreras
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French filmmaker Cedric Klapisch's smooth blend of comedy and family drama isn't nearly as delightful as last summer's WHEN THE CAT'S AWAY. But then it's not exactly trying to be. It's an adaptation of a successful play about a dysfunctional

French family -- from the opinionated matriarch (Claire Maurier) and her 30ish unmarried daughter Betty (Agnes Jaoui) to self-centered computer executive son Philippe (Wladimir Yordanoff) and his wife Yolande (Catherine Frot) -- who all descend for a birthday celebration on Henri (Jean-Pierre

Bacri), the cranky owner of the struggling family cafe whose wife Arlette has just left him. What follows is a universally recognizable family evening from hell during which sibling springs on sibling, always going for the most psychologically vulnerable pressure points, and everybody plays the

sharply defined roles they've been playing since childhood. Their mother isn't spared, nor is the aptly nicknamed Yoyo, (Catherine Frot), Philippe's not-so-bright and less than tactful wife. While Philippe self-consciously begs for feedback on his two-minute appearance on the local television news

program, Betty's lifelong rebelliousness comes back to bite her, as does her aversion to commitment. It's a tart slice of family life, swimming in a sauce of recrimination but not entirely without hope.

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  • Released: 1996
  • Rating: NR
  • Review: French filmmaker Cedric Klapisch's smooth blend of comedy and family drama isn't nearly as delightful as last summer's WHEN THE CAT'S AWAY. But then it's not exactly trying to be. It's an adaptation of a successful play about a dysfunctional French family… (more)

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