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Reminiscent of Hitchcock and Chabrol, The Page Turner is elegant yet suspenseful, a revenge potboiler of a high degree.
All Critics (65)
| Top Critics (24)
| Fresh (50)
| Rotten (15)
| DVD (3)
This must be what a French movie-of-the-week look like, deemed art here because of the subtitles.
The serving temperature of revenge has seldom been colder, nor the time of preparation longer, than for this gourmet French plat froid from writer-director Denis Dercourt.
It's a small French delicacy, tart, acerbic and cynical, that focuses on three or four characters and yet manages to bring them and their dilemmas to vivid life.
The stakes in this story seem too low to justify its audience's attention. If The Page Turner were a novel, it would hardly be a page turner. Why should we hold films to a lower standard?
In retrospect it's clear that when the filmmakers had a chance to hammer something they tapped it, instead.
[Director] Dercourt's manipulation of his characters and his imagery can be a little heavy-handed, but there's nary a wrong note in the performances of his exceedingly fine cast.
Style wins out over content in this delectable low-key French thriller by director Denis Dercourt...
This clever thriller certainly knows its Chabrol and its music.
With gentle plotting the intensity builds and builds until it all boils over.
Sneaky and altogether pleasing, if undeniably derivative.
If only the story could have been as involved and layered as some of the incredible music (or as good as a page-turner book), this would be a must-see.
A tautly crafted but deeply misogynistic and anti-workingclass French psychological thriller.
[font=Century Gothic]In "The Page Turner," Melanie(Deborah Francois) is an intern for a prestigious law firm who volunteers to be a nanny for her boss, Jean(Pascal Greggory), over the holidays. Not coincidentally, he is married to Ariane(Catherine Frot), a classical musician who ten years previously distracted young Melanie(Julie Richalet) at an audition which she failed, vowing never to play again. But she still retains enough musical knowledge to assist Ariane at a radio concert where she is to play as part of a trio...[/font]
[font=Century Gothic]"The Page Turner" is a nifty and subtle psychological drama that thankfully pulls its punches and leaves much to the imagination. Melanie is a thoroughly single-minded individual who by the time she is an adult, leads a solitary life with a very pleasant facade. As a child, she was obsessed with the piano; as an adult, it is with the woman she blames for botching her audition. Yes, Ariane was very rude but that is not a good enough reason to carry a grudge all these years. While it may seem easy for Melanie to insinuate herself into the household, it does appear that she has been planning this for a very long time, knowing exactly which buttons to push. Personally, I think Melanie was also behind the hit and run that so unnerved Ariane. [/font]
Though flawed, an effective thriller.
A young girl, Melanie, dreams of becoming a professional musician and finds her hopes shattered in an instant when one of the judges listening to her performance - a famous concert pianist - agrees to sign an autograph, causing her to lose confidence and blow her chance.
Later in life, Melanie (Debroah Francois), now a young woman, exploits an opportunity to exact revenge.
The Page Turner is an icy-cold and expertly mounted tale of revenge, piling on the tension in a lean 85 minutes, mostly eschewing blood in favour of psychological consequences; Melanie slowly builds a relationship and trust with the family she works for before beginning to turn the tables. The finale may lack sensationalism but remains true to the story and the performances from Deborah Francois and Catherine Frot are superb.
Icily efficient thriller which makes its understated chills stand out. Clinically composed and beautifully scored.
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