Francois Ozon’s film is a voyeuristic masterpiece. A teacher of French literature is bored with talentless students in his middle school before he comes across a student who has something different in his essays: a first hand observation of a friend’s house where he has long wanted to enter. The teacher not only keeps checking his essays but starts guiding him under his personal tutelage for better writing and gives way to his student in doing what he has been driven to do. He goes as far as stealing papers of another subject to help him out in his plans to enter in the house and stay there as his essays become more and more riveting chapters of a novel!
Gradually we see that story gets very compelling and the infatuation of the writer towards his friend’s mother gets better of him. The climax is stunning and shows that the teacher and the student are both left alone to each other having lost their family and friends. But they have themselves to turn to with other voyeuristic stories they create as they sit in front of a large building complex. This film has a wonderful score and the way story had been narrated is funny and mysterious. The various angles on relations have many undertones. The relationship between two friends, two husbands and wives, between the student and the mother of his friend, between the student and his friend’s father are all intriguing yet it seems that they have not been built well enough and the audience is left wanting more. All performances are stunning but the two main characters have been played remarkably well by Fabrice Luchini and Ernst Umhauer. This film is clearly worth an 8 out of 10.
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