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  • CQ
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on November 17, 2015
This is an excellent movie (IMHO) that appears to have slipped under the radar.

The recollections of a young, aspiring filmmaker working as an editor on a French-Italian science-fiction flick in 1969-1970, "CQ" is part homage to the tradition of reflexive films (where the film is about the making of a film), part nostalgic reverie for late 60s aesthetics of science fiction ("Barbarella" being the obvious source material), part coming-of-age narrative, and part love story. Such a film might easily get bogged down in pretentious twaddle but "CQ" is irreverent and whimsical enough to avoid this despite connections to far "weightier" films. There are Criterion films I don't like nearly as well - it is easily among my top 100 favorites.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon August 7, 2012
This is the first feature film by Roman Coppola (son of Francis Ford Coppola) and is one of those films that says "I'm not sure why I liked it but I did," which means of course, many won't. Paul (Jeremy Davies, TV's "Justified") is an American living in Paris in 1969 working in the movie industry that focuses on schlock "B" movies. His current film is a silly sci-fi secret agent film called "Dragonfly" (Angela Lindvall) which is the government agent's code name.

Paul's real passion however is a black and white documentary he is working on which mainly consists of filming things around his apartment which he shares with an Air France flight attendant (Elodie Bouchez). He spends much of this personal film sitting on a toilet (uh, like a chair) talking into the camera. Better lighting in the bathroom I guess.

The filmmakers do a nice job of creating the look of films shot in the late 60's, especially those of smaller budgets. And the film within a film, "Dragonfly" carries that same look of the era. "Barbarella" is certainly an influence. Paul is essentially a quiet, insecure individual not sure what he's trying to accomplish. His relationship with Marlene (Bouchez) is souring as he ignores her for the most part.

A couple things transpire that begin to change his life. The director of the film, as well as an interim director (Gerard Depardieu and Jason Schwartzman), leave the picture that isn't finished. The producer (Giancarlo Giannini) then promotes Paul who is the editor and second unit director, to write an ending and finish the film. Using influences of his own life, dreams and fantasies ("CQ" = seek you), he does. The movie isn't polished and hits a few snags, but I found it enjoyable and fun.
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on September 2, 2015
CQ is the quirky, entertaining writing and directorial debut of Roman Coppola, son of the famous Godfather auteur Francis Ford Coppola. Starring Jeremy Davies (Saving Private Ryan) as Paul Ballard, an introverted but determined American film director working in 1969 Paris, the film masterfully cuts between the surreal world of late 1960s Europe, the wild speculation of the B-grade sci-fi/spy movie that Davies is working to complete, and the introspective documentary that is Paul's passion project.
CQ has great performances by Elodie Bouchez as Paul's exasperated French girlfriend, Giancarlo Giannini as Enzo, the film's larger than life producer, and Angela Lindvall as Valentine, the inexperienced but luminous American who is the star of the sci-fi film as Codename: Dragonfly. Although its' plot is light as a croissant, CQ really captures the setting and mood of what being an expat American in that time must have been like. The excellent soundtrack by the French electopop group Mellow really adds to the exercise. Overall, this is a fun film that leaves you wanting to know what happens next to Paul, Valentine and all the rest of the cast.
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on December 4, 2012
CQ is a hidden gem! It is a homage to the quirky, avant garde European sci-fi films of the 1960's that is part history lesson (if you know what to look for) and part love letter to an era of cinema magic. It's heart is Barbarella, but it's so much more then that. The cinematography is spot on for the time period, as is the soundtrack. And what a cast! Well worth hunting up!
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on September 26, 2010
This movie is hard to judge and describe. It has well-carried out ideas, beautiful cinematography and overall, makes for an enjoyable piece of eyecandy for fans of Barberella, Fellini and film-lovers of art over plot.

If you are looking for action, sci-fi, etc. look elsewhere. It is more of a movie lover's insider's pun than anything genre-wise.

I laughed at much of the satire, and had a great Sunday afternoon distraction. Also, the soundtrack is GREAT!

This is not for everyone's taste, but I completely enjoyed it.
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on February 12, 2004
CQ really is a treasure. I was first intrigued by this film when I saw the soundtrack lying in a local bookstore. I thought it was a film from the 60's, but sure enough there was a cast that included modern-day players like Jeremy Davies, Billy Zane and the ever-quirky Jason Schwartzman. I found the film and was really intrigued by it for a long, long time. Finally I decided to buy it, without even viewing it first. And I'm very happy I did. CQ is a real delight about the little guy rising up and taking charge.
Jeremy Davies is really enjoyable as Paul Ballard, a young American filmmaker living in Paris, searching for his inner-self. Angela Lindvall gives a suprisingly real and sweet performance as Valentine and a sexy, cat-like performance as Dragonfly. I was surprised that this was her first film.
The extras on this DVD are very unique and watchable. In closing, CQ is a really fun, well-written, well-directed film and my advice is that you buy it!
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on September 2, 2016
Campy, but well made and interesting, great actors. Worth a look, I enjoyed it.
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on July 18, 2014
Cq is a 5 stars picture quality dvd copy. Played on a ps3 with a vizio 1080p tv. It looked bluray and i wish they all were this good. Audio was average.
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on August 16, 2016
my husband like this move
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on December 4, 2003
This movie goes way beyond just the making of a B movie sci fi flick in Paris. Yes, Roman Coppola's first feature - which is probably why the real content of this film is about a young filmmaker coming of age in life and career - struggling with conflict both personal and professional to produce his art. Fortunately the sci-fi B movie backdrop is very creative and fun and some may interpret a deeper understanding of 20 year-old-Americans-in-Paris in 1969 which adds to the artsy underground "revolution" feeling of film. Overall a very smart production with unique appeal.
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