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Top 100 Most Anticipated Films of 2010: Francois Ozon’s Figurehead

I tend to prefer when Ozon works with “less”, by less I mean a smaller ensemble as in Water Drops on Burning Rocks, Sous le sable, Swimming Pool and 5×2. So he once again won over critics when he stuck to a simple story as done with Le Refuge, and while Figurehead contains a stellar ensemble (he once again works with Ludivine Sagnier) that seems to be as big as Arnaud Desplechin’s A Christmas Tale, I’ve got a feeling that the era in which it is set in and the famous play on which it is based on might only give the project wings. Look for women with crazy hairdos, men with lots of facial hair and lots of lavish trimmings from the bourgeoisie folk.

IONCINEMA.com Top 100 Films

#78. Potiche (aka Figurehead)

Director/Writer: François Ozon
Producers: Eric and Nicolas Altmeyer
Distributor: Rights Available.

The Gist: Adapted by the director from Pierre Barillet and Jean-Pierre Grédy’s eponymous play, Potiche is set in a French bourgeois province in 1977. Suzanne (Deneuve) is the submissive wife of rich industrialist Robert Pujol (Luchini), who runs his umbrella factory with an iron hand and turns out to be just as nasty and tyrannical with his workers as he is with his mistress (Viard), children (Renier and Godrèche) and “trophy” wife.….(more)

Cast: Gérard Depardieu, Catherine Deneuve, Ludivine Sagnier, Cécile De France, Jérémie Renier, Karin Viard and Fabrice Luchini

Why is it on the list?I tend to prefer when Ozon works with “less”, by less I mean a smaller ensemble as in Water Drops on Burning Rocks, Sous le sable, Swimming Pool and 5×2. So he once again won over critics when he stuck to a simple story as done with Le Refuge, and while Figurehead contains a stellar ensemble (he once again works with Ludivine Sagnier) that seems to be as big as Arnaud Desplechin’s A Christmas Tale, I’ve got a feeling that the era in which it is set in and the famous play on which it is based on might only give the project wings. Look for women with crazy hairdos, men with lots of facial hair and lots of lavish trimmings from the bourgeoisie folk.

Release Date/Status?: Pegged for a November release in France, I’m thinking that TIFF might claim stake to the film.

 
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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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