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    May 27, 2012

    FAFF 2012: ROMANTICS ANONYMOUS

    ROMANTIC ANONYMOUS (N/A)

    Genre: Romance/Comedy/International
    Release Date: FFF 2012
    Running Time: 80 minutes
    Distributor: -
    Director: Jean-Pierre Améris
    Screenplay: Jean-Pierre Améris, Philippe Blasband
    Starring: Benoit Poelvoorde, Isabella Carre, Lorella Cravotta, Lisa Lametrie, Swann Arlaud

    Plot: Romantics Anonymous tells the story of Angélique (Isabelle Carré), a gifted chocolate-maker whose uncontrollable shyness prevents her from acknowledging her talents. Struggling chocolatier Jean-René (Benoît Poelvoorde), who also suffers from a similar case of awkward bashfulness that threatens to drown his company, hires Angelique as his new sales associate. Realizing she's attracted to her boss, Angelique decides to anonymously develop a new line of chocolates to save the company. With the future of the business hanging in the balance, Angelique and Jean-Rene must overcome their limitations and confess their sweet affections for one another in this delectable comedy. REVIEWS AFTER THE JUMP

    Review:  From the visionary takes from the French director Jean-Pierre Ameris, comes a well-balanced that muses the sweet-and-bitter taste in a strange romantic comedy. It may not be the biggest or the best French imports but it is a worthy one to indulge with. As a fresh French film viewer, I think this movie serves as a great introductory film before we set our foot into a bigger French cinematic experience. For what it is long understood, the movie keeps intact the long tradition of French signatures in stylish crafting a lovable romantic humor film into the exquisite setting so foreign for us.

    Love is ultimately unpredictable. In “Romantic Anonymous”, the strange tale of two very different yet very similar people is highlighted with a common interest for chocolate but spiced with troubling social anxiety that takes a toll on the relationship. Angelique Delange (Carre) who looks like Amy Adams; is an extremely gifted chocolatier who has plenty of reason to feel the anxiety. Angelique, who experiences phobia for been questioned, praised, dismissed and loved; found a new job as a sales-rep in a bankruptcy-threatened chocolate factory owned by Jean-Rene Van Den Hudge (Poelvoorde). Jean-Rene has the anxiety when it comes with women as he ends up sweating so profusely that he needs a brief-case of fresh shirts everywhere he goes. Things get pretty awkward from the very beginning when the two indulge in an unexpected dinner date. While both grow attracted to one another, neither suspects their opposites’ anxiety attacks but it is that love for chocolate that enables both to take their awkward collaboration to save the factory.

    Foremost, it has the upmost brilliant and sugarly-coated scripts that allow the characters to indulge in both human relationships and the fondue of food in a soothingly balanced manner. Sweet conversations are cleverly manoeuvred with appropriate dosage of laughter as it evolves not only into a sweet flirtation but also into confusion arrays of panic attack, occasionally. Then, the script by the duo of Amaris and Belgian writer Phillippe Blasband also gives the story a more propelling dynamic as we can see from the characters. Both of the lead has experiences on hand as this is not their first on-screen together. Their musing chemistry proved to be valuable as they help in sorting a whole diversity of moods that touch the human heart and nature of every aspect.

    The well-knowledge movie-goers may find some resemblance with another older movie. Remember Lasse Hallstorm’s 2000’s “Chocolat” with Johnny Depp in it? Yes, this is a sort-off replication of the former with some degree of rip-offs but “Romantics Anonymous” differs itself by distinctively offering itself a marvellous love note for the hopeless to not giving up on love. As been said, love is unpredictable as it holds a swollen amount of perplexing doctrine and multifaceted

    While there are glamorous takes on the script and actor performances, unfortunately, the movie suffers a delirious direction of its own. The pacing is the main problem. The story has some difficulty in deciding the pace it needs to fuel some part of the story. While there is an equal taste just like the dark chocolate, it lacks the creativity as things turns out to be repetitive. In other smirk observation, it turns out that this charmer is simply another standard romantic comedy despite its brilliant script. Nevertheless, formulaic plot still works when it is meant to.


    For that particular reason, “Romantic Anonymous” is a well-dialogue, well-acted and balanced romantic comedy that has everything it needs to succeed but only to be dampen by its own awkward pacing and repetitive minor clichés.

    MY RATING:
    Story: 3.0
    Casts: 4.0
    Cinematography: 3.5
    Effects: 3.0
    GREEN-TEA-O-METER: 13.6/20.0

    You can catch "Romantics Anonymous" exclusively during the on-going French Film Festival 2012
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