Top critical review
9 people found this helpful
A Fine Cast and Tone, but Dreadfully Overplotted and Clichéd.
on April 2, 2009
"Tell No One" is a French adaptation of a pulpy American crime novel by Harlan Coben, so viewers are treated to a strange mix of European contemplation and American spectacle. Alexandre Beck (Francois Cluzet) is a doctor still grieving for his wife Margot (Marie-Josee Crozel), who was murdered 8 years ago as the couple was enjoying a romantic interlude at their favorite lake. Her death was blamed on a serial killer, but now two more bodies have been found at the lake. Alex had always been a suspect in his wife's death, and the new bodies rekindle the police's interest in him. Detective Levkowitch (Francois Berleand) and his younger, hot-headed partner seem to want to reopen the case. But someone is sending Alex e-mails that imply that Margot may not be dead.
This is an overplotted thriller whose twists and turns are likely to loose some of the audience along the way. Margot's behavior and that of the villain don't make sense, so the story is built on shaky premises. Then the plotting strains credibility. But this is probably a better French film than it would have been made in Hollywood. Its romanticism and emphasis on character partly compensate for a plot constructed of more clichés and revelations than it can support. Alexandre Beck becomes a classic existential character: a man wrongly accused, plunged into chaos where no one is what they seem and nothing makes sense. It starts out pretty well but goes off the rails. "Tell No One" has a fine cast but is headache-inducing and nonsensical. In French with optional English subtitles or dubbing.