If you find yourself in the position of wanting to look cultured and educated, yet craving something of a 1970s sex comedy, look no further than “Potiche”. It’s the story of a bored housewife (Catherine Deneuve) who finds herself in charge of her husband’s umbrella factory after unionists take him hostage. Enter Gerard Depardieu as the local Communist MP.
It’s a fun romp with a distinctly French attitude towards sex. There are no happy endings for everyone though; the cruel and conniving are punished with lives that are less than extraordinary. Compared to the American ideal, the film feels almost unfinished, until you realise that the choices the characters have made is ultimately what decides their fate. Compare this to the dull American sickly sweet endings where characters are smiled upon by luck and all are ultimately redeemed and the differences between the two cultures is thrown into stark relief.
4 out of 5 stars.