Director Claude Chabrol must have a thing for crime potboilers - - his last major film, Judgement In Stone, was based on a Ruth Rendell novel, while his latest is liberally adapted from Charlotte Armstrong's The Chocolate Cobweb.
Merci Pour Le Chocolat deals with the complexities of familial duty and the bonds of love. Chocolate magnate Mika (Huppert) has remarried André (Dutronc), an eminent pianist, 10 years after the death of his second wife. They enjoy a quiet existence with André's son (Rodolphe Pauly), until aspiring pianist Jeanne (Mouglais) enters their lives.
Despite its intriguing premise, Merci Pour Le Chocolat soon becomes a tedious affair. It's a psychological thriller where the psychological elements are obscured, and the thrills are non-existent. Chabrol neglects the plot to focus on atmosphere. Fans should avoid this and revisit his former glories instead.