Enemy brothers in Sex, Lies, and Surgery
by Fabien Lemercier
27/06/2012 - A surprising, generally well-reviewed film stands out among today’s new releases in France: Luxembourg-France-Belgium co-production Sex, Lies and Surgery, a comedy by and starring Artus de Penguern. The film, a send-up of medical television series, seems to have lived up to its ambitious pitch: "ER and Grey’s Anatomy in a comedy with Dallas-worthy story lines… All this to the tune of The Hangover with characters out of A Fish Named Wanda." Enemy surgeon brothers, forbidden love, promised inheritance, manipulation, betrayal, and conflicts are all on the menu of this accomplished parody that also stars Helena Noguerra and Bruno Salomone. Produced by Iris Productions, 2425 Films, Litswa, Iris Films, and Drimage on a € 4.5 m budget, de Penguern’s second feature after Grégoire Moulin vs. Humanity (2001) has been released by Rezo in 175 cinemas. The same company is also in charge of the film’s international sales.
Another comedy, a romantic one made on a much bigger budget (it’s a € 15.67 m Eskwad production) has also been released by Pathé in 556 cinemas. Un bonheur n'arrive jamais seul [trailer] (lit. “Happiness never comes alone”) by James Huth (The Brice Man [trailer]) is inspired by American classics (Cukor, Capra…), and stars the very popular Sophie Marceau and Gad Elmaleh. The story: Two complete opposites fall in love. They have nothing in common, but are perfect for one another in every way.
And then there is an amusing, radiant auteur comedy with a social twist and a whiff of whisky, The Angel’s Share [trailer, film focus] by British maestro Ken Loach, who won the Jury Prize for it in Cannes this year. The film is distributed by Le Pacte in 182 cinemas.
Another British film, Bel Ami [trailer] by Declan Donnellan and Nick Ormerod, adapted from the novel of the same name by Guy de Maupassant, is also out. Well-reviewed out of competition at the last Berlinale (read the review), this feature co-produced by Italy and France stars Robert Pattinson, Christina Ricci, and Uma Thurmann. StudioCanal has released the film in 131 cinemas.
Finally, French cinema-goers can also see Sibérie, a documentary by Joana Preiss about a journey she went on with film director Bruno Dumont (distribution: Capricci Films) and One O One by Frank Guérin (Kanibal Films).
(Translated from French)