Desplechin's big, bold, iconoclastic feature Rois et Reine is a disconcerting film that can turn your head at the oddest moments.
| Original Score: 3/4
Funny, absurd, often mocking itself and always quoting cultural history.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
While these characters' lives are melodramatic, individual scenes burst with kinetic energy from fast editing and an script that deftly underscores the destructive nature of male-female relationships.
| Original Score: A
There's a looseness to the camera work and storytelling that's appealingly breezy: This film feels, for better or worse, like real life.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
Kings and Queen, full of passion and humor, madness and grief, is close to a masterpiece.
| Original Score: 4/4
Kings and Queen is at times compelling, at times devastating, and at times long-winded.
It's a puzzle of a film, but not the kind that intimidates you with inscrutability so much as one that beckons you into its antic eccentricity.
[Desplechin] gives these characters the time to develop, to display their nuances, to establish their relationships with each other, to talk out their destinies.
The film is delectable and keeps you eager to see what's served next, but also is ridiculously rich, overly long and difficult to digest. Still, it's a feast you won't want to miss.
A richly observed study of the sticky complexities of family dynamics.
The movie, directed by Arnaud Desplechin and written by him with Roger Bohbot, begins as such a straightforward portrait of ordinary life that it's unsettling to find layer after layer of reality peeled away.
Kings and Queen is a marvelously textured and civilized study of two tormented souls finding redemption not in each other, but in themselves and in other people.
The film is a soap opera that through layering and texture is made into something rich, strange, and unforgettable.
Category-defying film that's as smart and emotionally resonant as it is entertaining.
| Original Score: 4.5/5
Contemporary and specific ... but the melodramas also play out on a universal plane, like the lives of the gods.
This enjoyable French pic welds together drama, melodrama and comedy in a blend with potentially strong European audience appeal.
By tempering the mania and offsetting the edginess of the deeply imperfect characters in this ambitiously free-form film, Desplechin offers that most old-form of balms -- compassion.
| Original Score: A-
An emotional jigsaw that will keep you engrossed for days, maybe years.
Arnaud Desplechin's sprawling drama exudes a go-for-broke determination that is frustrating and exhilarating.
Devos, as Nora, does much to hold it all together with a layered performance. Almaric has powerful moments as well, notably in a climactic rambling monologue about life he delivers to the boy.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
This movie, however incomplete and frustrating, is also fully alive and extraordinarily intelligent.
It's terrific filmmaking.
A welter of narrative complication and piercing drama shot through with a rich vein of absurdist humor.
| Original Score: 4/5