With a Friend like Harry... (2001)
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Critic Reviews for With a Friend like Harry...
It's Lopez's understated charm in the role that ultimately makes this film as creepy as it is.
An artfully entertaining psychological thriller.
It's a dry, cool character study that's primarily an exercise in tonal control - neither very funny nor very scary, but unnerving in a slow-burn way.
Unfortunately, the groove it settles into is a lot less interesting than the possibilities suggested earlier.
Audience Reviews for With a Friend like Harry...
With A Friend Like Harry is a suspenseful thriller filled with dark humor and driven by a wonderful performance from Sergi Lopez as Harry, a dangerously obsessive man who claims to be a high school acquaintance of the protagonist. Whether or not he's telling the truth about this is open to interpretation, but he is nonetheless a very fun and interesting character. His backstory is left completely ambiguous, allowing the viewer to interpret who he is, but he comes off as almost humorously psychotic at times. There isn't any huge revelation at the end. Rather, the ending is unusually quiet, although like the rest of the movie it's very suspenseful and tinged with a subtle sense of humor. With a Friend Like Harry is a refreshingly original and enjoyable thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat up until the end, and one that packs a spectacular performance from Sergi Lopez.
Hitchcock inspired suspense is fabulous because we know the French can produce great suspence without the Hitchcock inspiration. When the two come together we get With a Friend Like Harry or whatever else they want to call the English version of his film. Nonetheless it is dynamite. Who is this Harry and what is he really about? Will they find out before the dastardly plan comes to pass?
Fascinating study of a man whose obsession with a former schoolmate is disguised as an overabundant willingness to "help". We are never quite sure what fuels this dark psychosis, but we know things aren't right almost from the beginning. The tension quietly builds to a violent climax and leaves the intended victim victorious. The action takes place mainly at the young couple's country chateau. The scenery is pretty, but somewhat nondescript. The script is subtle and drops clues but never fully reveals its destination until the very end. There is a sexual tension that hangs heavily over the story, but it is never blatant or explicitly brought out into the open. Just a general unease in Marcel (Laurent Lucas) and Claire (Mathilde Segnier) triggered by the presence of Harry (Sergi Lopez) and his earthy girlfriend, Prune (translated as Plum, and played by Sophie Guillemin). Well done effort by director Dominik Moll and one that kept this viewer intrigued for nearly two hours.
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