Have you heard of/seen a French film called "Tell No One"/"Ne le dis à personne" ?? It’s based on the American novel of Harlan Coben’s "Tell No One" — so the English name is actually more original. I think you could say that the film has some American style. It’s released in late 2006 in France but was only released in US in July this year. I think you’d love it …
This early afternoon, I saw my Mom and sister off at the JFK airport. Immediately after I came home, I wanted to go to a cinema to see a movie which I almost couldn’t get to do when my Mom was here. I was thinking of "My Best Friend’s Girl" because of Kate Hudson or "The Women" … but the reviews have not been very good … By chance, I noticed a nearby cinema showing a French film called "Tell No One" and the review was quite good. Decision was easy then as seeing a foreign (non-US) film is always a plus when you’re in US.
This film is a very tense "mystery and thriller" kind of film. The pace is very fast and when you see the leading role run even he’s not guilty, it reminded me of Harrison Ford’s "The Fugitive". It also has a detective element …
It started with the husband (François Cluzet) hearing his wife shout from the other side of the lake. When he swam over there nervously to find his wife, he was knocked unconscious. Then, it’s fast-forwarded to 8 years later. The audience would start to find out what’s happened that night … we soon realized that it’s not only us not knowing what exactly had happened that night and in the 8 years, and nor was the husband.
I’ve seen François Cluzet before but probably I didn’t pay as much attention as of this one. He looks and even acts quite a bit like Dustin Hoffman. His expression-less face expression has its special charm. He has needed to do some detective works during the film but there is really nothing technical, not like CSI. ( I’ve recently been recommended by a librarian to read Patricia Cornwell’s Kay Scarpetta series and I’ve read two of them. It predated by the modern CSI type of TV series by 10 years. But this film has nothing like that. ) The French cops seem to be stupid at the beginning but then there was one smart ass. Just like "The Fugitive", the smart/good cop saw the obvious and wouldn’t be so easily fooled … ( Unlike Dr. Kay Scarpetta, the coroner or medical examiner didn’t take any initiative and was kind of stupid and even bureaucratic in this film. )
At least, there is one non-French actor, the brilliant English actress Kristin Scott Thomas. Before this film, I was totally ignorant of her French-speaking capability. While watching, I was thinking that maybe somebody else had dubbed her voice. But now I’ve just checked a bit in IMDB, she actually speaks fluent French. She has lived in Paris since the age of 19 and her husband is a French ! Anyway, her role is not always big in every movie and she’s done a good/great job in each of her roles from "Four weddings and a funeral", to almost Oscar-winning best actress in "English Patient", or just a few scenes in Tom Cruise’s "Mission Impossible" etc. etc. and of course this one. She’s a lesbian in this film but it’s not obvious at the beginning. ( I’ve just also checked … same-sex marriage is also not legal yet in France but only civil union. It made me wonder a bit as she called her partner "her wife" in this film …)
Though everything happens very fast and one only knew the entire/complicated truth at the very end, I think I almost understood everything. I relied on the English sub-title mostly and couldn’t afford to try to think/ponder what the French words meant as things happened very fast (except the most obvious, of course). There was probably one detail or 2 that I didn’t understand but they might not be very important. But when the DVD comes out next month, I may want to see it again (by making my library buy it and me borrowing it).
I think this is a very likeable French film and it’s not very hard for me to imagine that you Franco-philes would love it.
… Good night … as I’m enjoying my regained freedom now.