Gemma Bovery, French film cotton candy

I saw a very enjoyable bit of French film cotton candy last night, as part of the 23rd annual Richmond French Film Festival, Gemma Bovery, a story about a couple, resembling characters in the Gustave Flaubert novel Madame Bovary, who have just moved to the country. The baker, Martin Joubert has recently moved from Paris, and is played exquisitely by Fabrice Luchini. His understated facial expressions, deadpan and lusting in a middle aged way, are exploited for that extra second in takes. Gemma Arterton is sexy and innocent as the lead character unaware of the events in her namesake’s book. There is plenty of good comedy writing, more nuanced than the typical American man-child, stupid, potty comedy movie starring, e.g., Will Ferrell, Adam Sandler, Ben Stiller. Perhaps more in the vein of a successful comedic effort from Woody Allen. Or maybe it is the French countryside with homes a couple of hundred years old lending something slightly more adult to the material, which references an actual printed book. Although I do not believe sourdough bread (pain au levain) was directly mentioned, I did want to rush out and visit a bakery (boulangerie) and get some fresh bread. Enjoy the film if you get a chance!

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