Writer: Asha Gizelle M.Writer Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
"We’re the Millers", "The Godfather" and "Leon: The Professional"
Set in snooty Normandy, France, the film is based on the short novel by Tonino Benacquista. Receiving rave reviews for the 288-paged literary work, those who have already read it are putting their money on this action-packed comedy. The Manzoni family has been moving a lot before their sojourn in a credulous neighbourhood in France.
Giovanni Manzoni/Fred Blake (Robert De Niro) who is a former clan boss has been transported to Normandy, South of France, together with his family under the U.S. Witness Protection Program. Maggie Blake (Michelle Pfeiffer) has issues settling down in yet another new neighbourhood. Gorgeous Belle Blake (Dianna Agron) falls in love with a college student and fakes needing math lessons in order to start a relationship with him. Warren Blake (John D'Leo) who seems to be in a rush to grow up settles down in his new school quicker than expected but finds his way into trouble with his crooked habits.
Agent Stansfield (Tommy Lee Jones) who is large and in-charge of the witness protection program's subjects, dutifully checks in on them to ensure they are safe and that they do not go out looking for trouble. Malavita (underworld in Italian), the eponymous cattle breed plays a crucial role in the story as a family pet and probably as a dumb witness who sees it all but obviously is unable to retell the accounts to any souls alive.
Luc Besson, a Frenchman, is no stranger to the Hollywood blockbuster scene. "La Femme Nikita", "Kiss of the Dragon", "The Messenger" and "Leon: The Professional" are some of his hit films, and they all have action as the crux of a theme. The normality that runs in Besson's films are racy female counterparts who flaunt a few extra kicks and punches while looking prissy and gentile. This film is definitely the movie that will leave every member of the audience, no matter what age they are, with moments to take back home and chuckle about.
The script was strangely kept in sync with the minds of the audiences. The sweetheart pairing of Michelle Pfeiffer and Robert De Niro makes up to the ruggedness of the narrative. Belle Blake's rough-around-the-edges-persona is justified with Dianna Agron's carnal screen presence, which can also be deciphered as a poetic reference.
The plot does have some fissures and it may result in the slow process of the movie with the given 112 minutes. But then again the cocktail of American culture, French snootiness, grim humour and the underworld lifestyle in the film is something that should be looked out for.
If you are an avid movie buff of not so over-the-top films that are able to cheat their way into looking more extraordinary then perhaps this is not to be missed. The film comes with its own wickedly rustic charm that won't go amiss on screen. One downside to the film though, is when you realize that the climax arrives too quickly just as you wish to stay on for more. Cinema Online, 17 September 2013