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||IMDB Rating: 6.9/10 from AL votes
||Release: 29 November 2012 (Netherlands) /
||Genre: Comedy, Romance, Sport
||Director: Régis Roinsard,
||Stars: Bérénice Bejo, Déborah François, Dominique Reymond, Eddy Mitchell, Emeline Bayart, Féodor Atkine, Frédéric Pierrot, Marius Colucci, Mélanie Bernier, Miou-Miou, Nastassja Girard, Nicolas Bedos, Romain Duris, Shaun Benson, Yannik Landrein
||Synopsis: Spring, 1958. 21-year-old Rose Pamphyle lives with her grouchy widower father who runs the village store. Engaged to the son of the local mechanic, she seems destined for the quiet, drudgery-filled life of a housewife. But that's not the life Rose longs for. When she travels to Lisieux in Normandy, where charismatic insurance agency boss Louis Echard is advertising for a secretary, the ensuing interview is a disaster. But Rose reveals a special gift - she can type at extraordinary speed. Unwittingly, the young woman awakens the dormant sports fan in Louis. If she wants the job she'll have to compete in a speed typing competition. Whatever sacrifices Rose must make to reach the top, Louis declares himself her trainer. He'll turn her into the fastest girl not only in the country, but in the world! But a love of sport doesn't always mix well with love itself ... Written by The Weinstein Company
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Watch Populaire - Alternative Versions.
Following in the footsteps of the Academy Award-winning 'The Artist',
'Populaire' pays loving tribute to the motion pictures from a bygone
era. Whereas it was the silent movies of the 1920s in the case of the
former, the latter sets its sights on the crowd-pleasing Hollywood
comedies of the 1950s and 60s, a fact clearly evident right from its
animated opening credits which look like something straight out of a
Billy Wilder movie.
Then, movies were much simpler and sweeter, and indeed one should
similarly expect the same of 'Populaire'. A classic rom-com that pits
the slightly naïve 21-year-old village girl Rose Pamphyle (Deborah
Francois) with her dapper city boss Louis (Romain Duris) to whom she is
secretary to, it follows a pretty straightforward trajectory built
around the world of competitive speed typing, so if you're looking for
any surprises in the storytelling, then you're likely to be
But what it lacks in novelty, it certainly makes for up in dollops of
charm, so much so that we're willing to guarantee that you'll find much
truth in its hyperbolic marketing tagline that proclaims it "the most
enchanting romantic comedy since Amelie". There is something magical
about the fit between actor and character here, a truly entrancing
quality about how Francois plays Rose sweet, shy and klutzy and how
Duris cuts a suave, dashing and debonair figure in Louis.
Just as, if not more, importantly, is how Rose and Louis make an
exceedingly appealing couple, be it in their prickly initial encounters
or their subsequent intimate engagements. Francois and Duris share
zingy chemistry in their scenes together, the lively manner in which
they trade barbs and words of affection bound to keep a smile on your
face. Their spirited repartee is also thanks to a witty and engaging
script, which pays close and sharp attention to the evolving dynamic
between its characters.
Just as well-observed is the sport of competitive speed-typing, which
plays a central role in the evolving relationship between Rose and
Louis. Rather than give up on the otherwise dreamy and absent-minded
Rose, Louis recognises her single uncanny gift of typing very quickly,
prompting him to propose an unusual arrangement in which he trains her
for competitions in exchange for keeping her job as his secretary.
Needless to say, she improves swiftly under his tutelage, progressing
from regionals to nationals and finally to internationals, the title of
the film a reference to her newfound popularity as well as the name of
the typewriter she does a celebrity endorsement for.
We know you're thinking how a bunch of mostly middle-aged women in
thick-rimmed glasses hammering away at ancient typewriters can be
anything exciting. Well, that's where you are absolutely wrong. There
is pure thrill to be had in each one of these competitions, the
combined effect of whirling dolly shots and some sharp editing
combining to inject much excitement into the repetition of pounding
keystrokes and slamming carriages. Never for once failing to amaze with
the intensity and concentration required of participants in such
competitions, it suitably jazzes up what one would assume a sedate
activity, let alone a sport.
The staging of these contests is but one illustration of how impressive
the mise-en-scene of the movie, which is even more amazing for the fact
that this is also director Regis Roinsard's feature filmmaking debut.
Roinsard, who also co-wrote the script with Daniel Presley and Romain
Compingt, combines detailed set and costume design by Sylvie Olive and
Charlotte David with a classy score by Rob and Emmanuel d'Orlando and
classic French oldies from the likes of Jacqueline Boyer, Jack Ary and
Les Chausettes Noires, the effect of all these various elements making
for a remarkably rich and authentic period portrait.
Especially as modern-day films revel in greater shades of grey, it is
refreshing to see a movie whose pleasures are so elemental and yet
deeply enjoyable. "Populaire" harks back to the days of the Doris Day
rom-coms even as it also pays homage to other classic films of the
same era, most notably Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo" offering a
delightfully buoyant time brimming with wit, humour and passion. Excuse
the pun if you're looking for a movie to lift your spirits, this one
strikes all the right keys.
Tags for Populaire Full Movie
, Déborah François
, Dominique Reymond
, Eddy Mitchell
, Emeline Bayart
, Féodor Atkine
, Frédéric Pierrot
, Marius Colucci
, Mélanie Bernier
, Nastassja Girard
, Nicolas Bedos
, Romain Duris
, Shaun Benson
, Yannik Landrein
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