If all it took to make an uninteresting character suddenly interesting was to leave him paralyzed after a car wreck, then “Cavalcade” might fly. Alas, “based on a true story” account of a thrirtysomething musician and playboy is an “inspirational” pic whose content and execution are almost completely uninspired. Oddly, just as there’s a current rash of international pics featuring fiftyish men unaware they’d fathered children decades prior, so is this the second French film in two months (“Three Couples in Search of Trouble”) to revolve around a selfish guy who learns tediously presented life lessons when deprived of physical autonomy. If TV didn’t exist you’d have to invent it for “Cavalcade.”
Leo (Titoff) ignores his girlfriend (Marion Cotillard) to carouse and gives his three fellow bandmates a hard time. When Leo crashes his Mercedes convertible, he is left in a coma followed by a year in the hospital. Memorable scenes, while sparse, include a wheelchair gang of vicious punks who shake down fellow patients, and a deadpan visit from a sex adviser. Potential pockets of genuine emotion are sabotaged by Michel Legrand’s syrupy score.