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The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec
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There's certainly a hint of Hollywood blockbuster about Luc Besson's adaptation of Jacques Tardi's famed French comic strip about a female adventurer. But as with
The Fifth Element
before it, a strong injection of Gallic eccentricity ensures plenty of deviation from the usual formula. The action begins in Paris, 1912, with a pterodactyl hatching from its egg in a museum and going on to menace the city, prompting another challenge for Adèle Blanc-Sec. Louise Bourgoin's indefatigable heroine blends Indiana Jones's guile with a certain head-girl hauteur, while an Egyptian theme calls to mind
(although with variable digital effects). Much of the knockabout comedy and verbal wit is perhaps lost in translation, but the sheer whimsicality of the storytelling, enchanting Paris locations and deliciously ornate design work add to the appeal. Former Bond villain Mathieu Amalric gets a rather generous second billing for his brief showing as the heroine's nefarious rival, which is somehow typical of a film that's never quite as witty or thrilling as you'd hope, yet marches defiantly to its own beat.
A globetrotting French writer travels to Egypt in 1911, hoping to find and restore to life the mummified remains of a pharaoh's doctor and get his help reviving her comatose sister. On her return home, she has also has to contend with a pterodactyl causing mayhem on the streets of Paris. Fantasy adventure, starring Louise Bourgoin and Mathieu Amalric. In French.
Cast & Crew
Justin de Saint-Hubert
Professor Marie-Joseph Esperandieu
Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre
Contains brief nudity.
DVD and Blu-ray
22 Apr 2011
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