Private Fears in Public Places (Coeurs)

JULY 25, 2007

2/10. A travesty of the film-makers art, dull where it should be emotionally compelling, boring where it should have been funny. One imagines that Ayckbourn’s original play wasn’t half bad but Resnais’s reversioning is an abject lesson in how not to direct. No doubt some the blame lies with the script. However everything from awkward, uninspired, laboured camerawork, a mise-en-scene both dull and, at times, painful (the bar’s colour scheme could not have been more unpleasant to the eye), and general poor storytelling (due both to bad editing and a failure to coax any chemistry from the talented cast) helped to reduce this far below whatever potential it originally had.