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The Trilogy

4.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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(Nov 08, 2005)
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Editorial Reviews

Dvd. 3 films 1) on the Run 2) An Amazing Couple 3) After Life

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: François Morel, Ornella Muti, Gilbert Melki, Catherine Frot, Lucas Belvaux
  • Directors: Lucas Belvaux
  • Writers: Lucas Belvaux
  • Producers: Arlette Zylberberg, Diana Elbaum, Patrick Sobelman
  • Format: Box set, Color, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Virgil Films
  • DVD Release Date: November 8, 2005
  • Run Time: 341 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000BDGWH6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,986 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Trilogy" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Either you enjoy European cinema or you don't.

Hollywood blockbusters overwhelm your senses and leave you breathless and dazed but without being too intellectually demanding; Quentin Tarentino not withstanding Hollywood doesn't leave audiences confused. The Hollywood philosophy is that people don't want to think when they go to the movies. I believe this is true for most people most of the time. (Well it's true for me anyway.) I also believe that most people do enjoy something thoughtful some of the time and Lucas Belvaux's trilogy then fits the bill.

The three movies of the trilogy do not take place one after the other, but all at the same time. We see the same people and sometimes the same scenes but following a different dramatic progression.

The movies follow three women, Cécile, Jeanne, and Agnès. They teach at the same university in Grenoble, France. All women appear in all three movies, but each film focuses on just one.

The first film starts with a worried Cécile organizing a surprise party for her hypochondriac husband Alain who is trying to hide his (he belives) terminal condition from her. She mistakenly suspects him of having an affair. The surprise party scenes appear in all three films. Her colleagues Jeanne and Agnès both come, and Agnès faints after drinking too much champagne.

The second film, with the most complex plot of the three, centers on an old Marxist revolutionary friend of Jeanne's named Bruno. Bruno escapes from jail and makes for Grenoble where he tries to enlist Jeanne in continuing the revolution. She's now a married mother and refuses, but provides some assistance.
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Format: DVD
"The Trilogy" is a 2-disc set that consists of 3 award-winning films that intersect, with the same time-frame viewed from different perspectives, enabling the ensemble cast to take turns in the lead roles. The concept is clever, but the individual lives it follows are empty of meaning, creatures of habit and need, and 341 minutes of watching them mangle their lives can be quite tiresome. Writer/director/actor Lucas Belvaux has assembled a fine group of actors, and the production, filmed in Grenoble and its environs is good, though the pacing at times is very slow, and the plot lines are stretched to their limit.

Trilogy One: "Cavale" ("On the Run"), is about a terrorist who escapes from prison after 15 years of a 30-year sentence. He's an arrogant thug who kills with impunity for his "cause," and after his breakout contacts his old comrades to either make them complicit in his plans or to shoot them. The ending however is perhaps the best thing in the entire trilogy. Director Belvaux plays Bruno the thug, and Catherine Frot plays Jeanne.

Trilogy Two: "Un Couple Ëpatant" ("An Amazing Couple"), is "comedic relief," with some Keystone Kops moments that are sometimes amusing. It is about a forgetful hypochondriac and his wife, who both suspect each other of being unfaithful. Ornella Muti plays Cécile, and François Morel is Alain.

Trilogy Three: "Apres la Vie" ("After Life"), follows the life of heroin addict Agnes, and her husband, a policeman, Pascal. He becomes her "pusher," and she manipulates his love with her needs. Agnes is on the surface a character who would evoke compassion, but she is ultimately a "user" in every sense of the word, dominated by her selfishness, and one of the 2 least likeable characters in the trilogy, the other being the other model of selfishness, the despicable Bruno. Pascal is weak, and not more than the fly in her web. Dominique Blanc is Agnes, and Gilbert Melki is Pascal.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
excellent
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Format: DVD
The three films in this trilogy cover the same span of time from three different viewpoints. Various scenes appear repeatedly in the three films, but each time, we see them from the vantage point of that film's main characters.

By the end of the third movie, we've gained a lot more insight into the characters than we would from watching any of the individual movies. Whether that insight is worth the almost six-hour running time, though, is a different question. While Belvaux has succeeded in making a trilogy that's greater than the sum of its parts, it should (ideally) be possible to watch any of the individual films and enjoy it on its own merits. Unfortunately, the individual movies themselves are good but not great. Especially "An Amazing Couple" which is, for a romantic comedy, pretty flat.

Overall, I would give the artistry of the films four stars, but I'm only rating this CD set as three stars, because of the poor video quality. The films are non-anamorphic, and the English subtitles are a permanent part of the image.

While these movies are definitely worth a viewing for fans of off-the-beaten-track cinema, I would strongly recommend a rental over a purchase.
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