A note of genuine sadness sneaks through at the end, but for the most part, enjoying 8 Women involves coming to terms with its artificiality and learning to appreciate it from a distance. Behind all that thick glass, it's still a work of art.
An Agatha Christie drawing room mystery crossed with the '50s setting and melodrama of Douglas Sirk crossed with the musicality of Jacques Demy with some Aaron Spelling bitchery thrown in for good measure.
Some may find Ozon's rigorously clever deconstruction of so many conventions a little too French for their tastes, but cineasts and worshippers of les femmes at their most fatales will find this farce wonderfully fierce.
The enfant terrible of French cinema, François Ozon's brave foray into the mind of not one, but eight, women is a gloriously-executed examination of what lies beneath the manicured façade of the female species.