Kaleidoscopic, bizarre, and finally, maddening. Wild Grass started out as a realistic examination of characters ? with some surrealistic undercurrents ? through a serendipitous intersection before careening off a cliff into a canyon of WTF. Early on, there was some darkness in the stalker quality with which Georges Palet wanted to know more about Marguerite Muir?s life, after he recovered her stolen wallet. But the film simply refused to go anywhere with this approach. It started observational and oddly charming, if not slightly disturbing, but slowly grew exasperating. The film totally whiffs attempting whimsy in trying to build a connection between Georges and Marguerite where it should?ve been, you know, building their characters. Oh, and by the way, Georges has a wife, and she knows about his apparent longing for Marguerite, but she has this knowing about Georges and his (never-revealed) dark past that makes the courtship ? or whatever you want to call it ? something that?s understood, if not a bit sad to her. And Marguerite has a friend, too, that somehow weaves herself as a primary character in the story, and yet I?m not sure why.
In fact, at some point, the movie loses nearly all hinges, and practically becomes a parody of European arthouse cinema. Colorful, yes, but about as nourishing as lollipop regurgitation. Forget about incomplete character arcs and under- and un-developed characters; this movie ventures into a quiet absurdism where characters seem to do whatever, and things happen onscreen, but nothing is really tethered together with any kind of logic. But hey, pretty colors! Interstitial scenes of grass outgrowths on sidewalks (er, wild grass?)! Actresses that look like the French Tea Leoni (this is a good thing), French Idina Menzel, and a French muppet! So yeah, pretty disappointing considering the buzz I had heard going in. The final amusement of the film is that it may have oddly given me everything that I ever wanted for these characters: violent, violent death. Well, at least the possibility of it (the ?how? and ?why? of this will be explained in the film). Hey, a guy can hope.