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Love Crime (2011)



Average Rating: 6.2/10
Reviews Counted: 78
Fresh: 50 | Rotten: 28

Director Corneau's swan song, Love Crime is smart and typically well-directed, but too thin and formulaic to overcome its melodramatic trappings.


Average Rating: 6.6/10
Critic Reviews: 21
Fresh: 13 | Rotten: 8

Director Corneau's swan song, Love Crime is smart and typically well-directed, but too thin and formulaic to overcome its melodramatic trappings.



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Average Rating: 3.2/5
User Ratings: 1,788

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Movie Info

The final film from director Alain Corneau, Love Crime pits the fiery talents of Ludivine Sagnier and Oscar-nominee Kristin Scott Thomas against each other in a deliciously twisted tale of office politics that turn, literally, cut-throat. When Christine, a powerful executive (Scott Thomas), brings on a naive young ingenue, Isabelle (Sagnier), as her assistant, she delights in toying with her naivete and teaching her hard lessons in a ruthless professional philosophy. But when the protege's ideas

Dec 27, 2011


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All Critics (79) | Top Critics (22) | Fresh (50) | Rotten (28)

Love Crime may not have much to do with love, but the crimes are meanly delicious.

October 28, 2011 Full Review Source: Detroit News
Detroit News
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The movie veers off in a different direction about two-thirds of the way through; the shift is initially jarring but eventually rewarding.

October 20, 2011 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Would anyone really perpetrate a scheme as complicated and risky as Isabelle's? Not likely - but that's why we go to the movies.

October 7, 2011 Full Review Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic IconTop Critic

This is a ridiculous movie - a thriller so indifferent to suspense, so above mystery that one character literally stabs another in the front.

October 6, 2011 Full Review Source: Boston Globe
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Especially one in a power suit, who knows how to work a room.

September 30, 2011 Full Review Source: Washington Post
Washington Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

On the one hand, you have to admire such obsessive mise en scene; on the other, there's something wrong with a suspense film when the sets are more interesting than the characters.

September 22, 2011 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It is strange how un-French the film really is: Roman Polanski would have had a field day with this material.

June 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Deadspin

Despite the odd false note, Love Crime's depiction of corporate backstabbing is scarily believable, yet it's as a perversely twisted modern film noir that the film delivers its biggest pleasures.

April 22, 2013 Full Review Source: Movie Talk
Movie Talk

While the second half is no stronger or weaker than the first, what it does confirm are any earlier suspicions that this is no more than a piece of competently executed French popcorn cinema along the lines of 2008's Anything For Her.

December 20, 2012 Full Review Source: HeyUGuys

This French dramatic thriller is so gleefully trashy that it's rather entertaining, as long as you don't try to take it seriously. Sleek and seductive, it's a pungent tale that plays out like a particularly lurid corporate soap.

December 19, 2012 Full Review Source:

Implausible perhaps, but the twists on Working Girl and All About Eve are intriguing and strongly acted.

December 17, 2012 Full Review Source: Scotsman

What a disappointment.

December 17, 2012 Full Review Source: Scotsman

The central performances are compelling but the two American characters are wholly unconvincing.

December 16, 2012 Full Review Source: Observer [UK]
Observer [UK]

[P]ure nefarious fun, as a satire of office politics and corporate sociopathy, for one of the most cleverly executed crimes I've ever seen on film, for its base feminism... for all the definitions of base.

December 14, 2012 Full Review Source: Flick Filosopher
Flick Filosopher

Corneau paints the business scenes with brushstrokes that aren't always credible but is better at the psychological battle between the two women, aided by very watchable performances from Scott Thomas and Sagnier.

December 14, 2012 Full Review Source: This is London
This is London

The interplay between the two very different leads and the involving, increasingly dark story keep things moving along nicely.

December 14, 2012 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

This is an ingeniously plotted film, and the two superb performances at its centre compensate for any implausibilities.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Daily Mail [UK]
Daily Mail [UK]

A tepid and unsurprising drama that overstays its welcome.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Little White Lies
Little White Lies

Love Crime has some intriguing touches, but a good deal of hammy acting as well, and the crucial murder scene is bafflingly accompanied by an ill-chosen Japanese-flavoured dinner-jazz soundtrack that kills the tension.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Guardian

A great thriller may yet be made about women competing in the workplace, but this French trifle from Alain Corneau ain't it.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Daily Telegraph
Daily Telegraph

All About Eve gone Gallic? Pretty much ...

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Financial Times
Financial Times

Quite watchable, sustained by the mechanics of an intriguing murder plot rather than convincing human drama.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: Daily Express
Daily Express

Enjoyably trashy, subtly subversive Euro thriller with a strong script and a pair of terrific performances from Kristin Scott Thomas and Ludivine Sagnier.

December 13, 2012 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

This chillingly acted thriller is convoluted but compelling.

December 12, 2012 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

We can only hope that Brian De Palma's forthcoming remake, Passion, is a lot more satisfying.

December 11, 2012 Full Review Source: The Skinny
The Skinny

It is less fertile territory than what has gone before but no less satisfying for mystery fans and Sagnier shines in a role that really does allow her to run the gamut from innocent victim to femme fatale.

December 5, 2012 Full Review Source: The List
The List

Audience Reviews for Love Crime

Interesting movie. I found Ludivine Sagniers acting to be questionable..but all in all a decent attempt at a thriller. I have read that an American version is being discussed..
January 28, 2014

Super Reviewer

Kinda strange, but a fun watch.
November 24, 2013

Super Reviewer

If you've ever been in a relationship with a working female you've probably heard something along the lines of "that bitch is out to get me" from your partner. In 'Love Crime', the "bitch" in question is Thomas, a cold-hearted executive who manipulates her latest underling, Sagnier, a young assistant who seems to hero worship her boss, at least at the outset. Sagnier throws herself into her work, only for Thomas to steal the credit and claim the ideas as her own. On the advice of a smitten male co-worker, Sagnier decides to go behind Thomas' back with her latest project, impressing the Washington office but igniting a new level of fury from Thomas whose chances of a transfer to New York have now been scuppered. Thomas' workplace intimidation now reaches new levels, culminating in her sleeping with Sagnier's lover and showing footage of Sagnier's hysterical reaction to an uncomfortable office party audience. Given this final straw, Sagnier decides it is time to break this camel's back.
'Love Crime' was originally released in it's native France back in 2010, long enough ago for an American remake to have already been completed. No doubt it's due to this remake, Brian De Palma's upcoming 'Passion', that Corneau's thriller is finally receiving a limited release in English speaking territories. It's one of those rare movies which could benefit from a remake and it will be interesting to see if De Palma can give it a more cinematic feel. Corneau's original is at it's best in it's first, more dramatic, half, essentially a two-hander between it's female leads. When the thriller element kicks in, Corneau struggles to present the plot in an engaging way.

Thomas is on fire here, playing a female twist on Kevin Spacey's Hollywood exec from 'Swimming With Sharks'. Actresses are increasingly finding themselves cast aside upon reaching middle age, struggling to find a good role. Some have chosen to enter the world of TV where roles for older women have always been far more plentiful. Thomas has taken advantage of her fluency in the French language to reinvent herself and she's reaping the rewards. Corneau has given her probably her greatest performance with a role that seems purposely written for her. We saw a glimpse of her playing this kind of bitchy character in last year's 'Salmon Fishing in the Yemen' and here she essentially plays a similar role but with the comedy removed. When a male character confesses to being afraid of her, you genuinely believe him. Unfortunately she doesn't get half as much screen time as the less interesting Sagnier and the movie suffers greatly for this.
Corneau's film is half workplace drama, half 'Columbo' episode. The former is riveting, the latter not so much. For thriller aficionados only.
January 1, 2013
The Movie Waffler

Super Reviewer

"Love Crime" starts with Christine(Kristin Scott Thomas) and her protege Isabelle(Ludivine Sagnier) working late into the night but struggling with a business proposal until Cristine's lover and business associate Philippe(Patrick Mille) shows up. Later, Isabelle finds a solution which earns her a trip to Cairo with the presentation and Philippe where the two get carnal on the side. However, it is Christine who ends up in line for a promotion when she takes credit for Isabelle's hard work. In response, Daniel(Guillaume Marquet) gives Isabelle a lead on a promising project. If that falls through, she could always invest in leather gloves and prescription medication.

"Love Crime" works best with the psychosexual themes of its first half before a pure wow moment. After that, the movie drags about in its game playing before a neat kicker of an ending. Like some of the characters, the movie is not quite as smart as it thinks it is. Regardless, on cetral display quietly commanding the room is gender. Except for one late scene, Chrstine and Isabelle seem to be the only women in the corporate office. Isabelle might think of herself as being part of a sisterhood but this is irrelevant to Christine who is only in it for herself. All of which is part of a valuable lesson in corporate life where one should never confuse business with friendship and everybody has a breaking point. Christine is nice to Isabelle because of the work she does, not as a person.(Christine's smile is not a friendly one. It is the same one the big bad wolf would use.) In return, Isabelle naively develops a crush on her boss.
October 3, 2011
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

    1. Christine: I refuse to be exposed.
    – Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
    1. Christine: We're gorgeous, no?
    – Submitted by Chris P (3 years ago)
View all quotes (2)

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  • Love Crime (Crime d'amour) (DE)
  • Love Crime (Crime d'amour) (UK)
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