Late August, Early September
Albeit highly conventional by the standards of new New Wave auteur Olivier Assayas (Irma Vep, Wild Reeds), this well-acted soaper about anguished Parisian thirtysomethings has sex appeal to spare--particularly in the form of Mathieu Amalric and Virginie Ledoyen, who more or less reprise their roles as the gorgeous romantics of My Sex Life... and A Single Girl, respectively. Here, they play the budding couple that threatens the Amalric character's lingering attachment to his former flame (Jeanne Balibar), currently playing hard to get. Aside from exploring the fear of death that people of any nationality begin to feel at this age, the movie is très Français, with Ledoyen's liberated young vixen representing the two extremes of Betty Blue: the woman who lives for screwing her boyfriend in various kinky positions and the one who'll hurt herself the very next day by strenuously trashing some other guy's apartment. Assayas aficionados would do well to take this as a guilty pleasure while awaiting the release of HHH, his documentary portrait of Hou Hsiao-hsien.