Le Bison (and His Neighbor Dorine)

"Le Bison (and His Neighbor Dorine)" marks the directing debut of co-star and co-scripter Isabelle Nanty. Despite upbeat returns for June 4 release, a producer of Claude Berri's stature should have thought twice before encouraging such a piffle.

With:
With: Isabelle Nanty, Edouard Baer, Martin Laval, Juliette Duval, Martine Chevallier.

A wafer-thin comedy of scant rewards, “Le Bison (and His Neighbor Dorine)” marks the directing debut of co-star and co-scripter Isabelle Nanty, best known abroad as the hypochondriac cigarette vendor in “Amelie.” Strained tale of a very pregnant concierge and mother of four who semi-bonds with the dissolute playboy next door relies on the compound mistaken assumptions that all children are inherently heartwarming, pregnancy and labor are a laugh riot and many an independently wealthy jerk is just waiting for the opportunity to abdicate his lifelong personality because the script says so. Despite upbeat returns for June 4 release, a producer of Claude Berri’s stature should have thought twice before encouraging such a piffle.

Loving mom Dorine Romero (Nanty) tends a ritzy apartment building in Paris. Shortly before their fifth child is due, her hubby splits. Neighbor Louis Le Bison (Edouard Baer) has been at war with Dorine, who’s forever vacuuming when he’s trying to sleep. But he turns out to be a semi-mensch, minding the brood while Dorine struggles to deliver. Hearty classical score dominated by Bach and Beethoven is incongruous for such an insubstantial film.

Le Bison (and His Neighbor Dorine)

France

Production: A Claude Berri presentation of a Pathe release of a Pathe Renn Production, Hirsch, TF1 Films Production production with participation of CNC and Canal Plus. (International sales: Pathe Intl., Paris.) Produced by Berri. Executive producer, Pierre Grunstein. Directed by Isabelle Nanty. Screenplay, Nanty, Fabrice Roger-Lacan.

Crew: Camera (color), Philippe Pavans de Ceccatty; editor, Catherine Renault; music, Ignatius, Jerome Bensoussan, classical standards; art director, Thierry Flamand; costume designer, Sylvie Gautrelet. Reviewed at UGC Danton, Paris, June 17, 2003. Running time: 93 MIN.

With: With: Isabelle Nanty, Edouard Baer, Martin Laval, Juliette Duval, Martine Chevallier.

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