Petites Coupures review

Tracking several eventful days in the life of Communist Parisian journalist Bruno (Daniel Auteuil), Petites Coupures (Small Cuts) is writer/director Pascal Bonitzer's follow-up to his exquisite, cruel comedy Rien Sur Robert.

It begins with Bruno reluctantly visiting his politico uncle, Gerard (Jean Yanne). Taking his younger girlfriend (Ludivine Sagnier) along for the schlep, Bruno then finds himself charged with delivering a letter to Gerard's wife's lover. Events further conspire against Bruno when he gets lost in a fog-wreathed forest...

Littered with symbolic objects (a ring, a gun, lipstick) that are passed around between the characters, and propelled by a dream-like plot, Bonitzer's digressive film is best viewed as a satire on the bourgeois midlife-crisis comedy. Yet for all the droll asides, it carries little emotional resonance. Still, at least Kristin Scott Thomas is in bewitching form, playing a seductress whose house Bruno stumbles upon.

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