Best known in the United States for “Je t’aime . . . moi non plus,” his racy duet with then-lover Jane Birkin, singer/songwriter Serge Gainsbourg packed a lot of life into 62 years. As much provocateur as artist, he delighted in defying expectations, so it is only appropriate that this offbeat biopic should do the same. In keeping with a subject who rode the waves of the pop charts, comic book artist–turned-filmmaker Joann Sfar takes a greatest-hits approach to Gainsbourg’s life, concentrating on his early years as a Jewish child in Nazi-occupied France, his transition from painter to jazz musician to pop superstar, his storied romances with the likes of Birkin and Brigitte Bardot, his many scandals and the behind-the-scenes stories of some of his most famous songs, including the Bardot hits “Bonnie and Clyde” and “Comic Strip.” In spot-on casting, Kacey Mottet Klein contributes a vivacious turn as Lucien, the precocious, irrepressible boy who would grow up to be Serge Gainsbourg, while Eric Elmosnino is a dead ringer in looks and mannerisms for the adult Serge. Sfar’s own comic-book roots are evident in some of the drama’s quirkier elements, particularly “La Gueule” (or “ugly face”), a grotesque alter ego—part imaginary friend and all id—who accompanies Gainsbourg through life. This imaginative, exuberant and affectionate take on the man, his music and his times is a treasure trove for his fans and a witty introduction to anyone unfamiliar with his legend. —Pam Grady
As Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life opens at New York’s Film Forum, Cinefamily screens Gainsbourg and His Girls in Los Angeles.
Robert Duvall and Bill Murray, Kevin Kline and Paul Dano, Steve Carell and Paul Rudd. None of them are in Brett Haley's The New Year, but they
Visually sumptuous but ideologically empty-headed, Joann Sfar’s adaptation of his own graphic novel doesn’t offer any real insights into the motivations of the famous and controversial French musician… read review
Pouco se sabia sobre o filme quando finalmente foi anunciada a data de estreia, quase um ano depois do previsto inicialmente; o trailer foi pouco divulgado mesmo em terras do Sena, o realizador é estreante… read review