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All Critics (14)
| Top Critics (7)
| Fresh (7)
| Rotten (7)
The freewheeling narrative experimentation and cryptic social commentary recall 60s Godard, but the vibe is Bozon's own.
Peculiar and abrasive ...
Confirms director and co-screenwriter Serge Bozon as one of French cinema's true oddballs.
The resulting clash of tones initially seems jarring, but ultimately original and invigorating.
An overwrought experiment in cerebral slapstick that misses more targets than it hits.
Serge Bozon's smart, surprising, marvelously realized French crime-and-sex police drama/comedy distinguishes itself with trenchant plotting, inspired framing, and performances that honor true human feeling even as they lunge into the screwball.
As with the Golden Age American B-movies Bozon admires, Tip Top's primary concern is not with identifying the bad guy, but with smuggling in as much additional information as possible, including televised images of the unfolding Arab Spring.
This sui generis policier audaciously balances slapstick with a fiercely intelligent probing of the still-knotty legacy of France's colonialist past.
One minute a tense police procedural, the next a wacky Almodóvarian sex farce, this schizophrenic enterprise is more wearying than entertaining.
Instead of finding one consistent tone and sticking to it, Serge Bozon allows the wildly hilarious and the grimly serious to uneasily coexist, exulting in the resultant clash.
Director Serge Bozon is not sure whether he intends a linear or non-linear sex rib-tickler or noir thriller, a female buddy cop caper or a social comment. Or all of them.
For the most part, however, the comedy feels forced, as if Bozon is indulging a rather obscure private joke.
In "Tip Top," a confidential informant from Algeria has been murdered. Esther Lafarge(Isabelle Huppert) has been assigned the case. She chooses Sally Marinelli(Sandrine Kiberlain), who had been demoted to internal affairs for personal reasons, to be her assistant. Together, they investigate the case, starting by talking to the victim's wife Virginie(Karole Rochar). Robert Mendes(Francois Damiens) takes another angle, by recruiting Younes(Aymen Saidi) to be his new informant.
"Tip Top" is an offbeat political mystery that is as interested in who the victim was as who the murderer is. In this immigrant milieu, reflected by rioting simultaneously occurring in Algeria, the movie is very much interested in identity. So, investigating are two women who are not so strange for their sexual fetishes but for other reasons. Sally might not have a personal identity of her own and has to copy others while Esther might just be a vampire. That being said, they still go out and do their job in the most professional way possible.
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