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Venus Beauty Institute [VHS]
Top Customer Reviews
DVD or VHS's cover will show you three workers (how do you say in English?) at a beauty salon, clad in vivid pink, but the film's main story follows Nathalie Baye's character, Angele, now forty-years-old, whose relationships with a man she loved in the past, it is implied, had not been an easy one. The moment she is ditched by a guy after a 3-days love affair, she encounters a new love without her knowing; in fact, you see behind that guy, an artist Antoine (Samuel Le Bihan, seen in "Brotherhood of Wolf") falls in love at first sight. Suddenly she is told that he loves her, and he keeps on coming in spite of her repeated rejection. Should she accept his love, instead of having an easy relations with forgettable dates, knowing that loving means complicated things, as she experienced before....
In the meanwhile, Angele's co-workers have their own relationships, and they are told (or implied) in a very subdued, subtle way. Samantha (played by Mathilde Seinger, younger sister of Emmanuelle of "The Nineth Gate" and Harrison Ford film "Frantic") seems to keep on having dates every night with different boys. Other worker, youngest Marie (lovely Tautou) is courted by an old, kind gentleman who asks her to come to his house.Read more ›
So when Antoine falls in love with her at something like first sight (I do have a weakness for love at first sight: it is so, so daring, and so, shall we say, unpredictable) she rejects him out of hand even though he is a vital and handsome artist, confident and winning. What IS her problem? But he pursues her even though he is engaged to another (Helene Fillieres). And when she gets drunk and wants some casual sex with him, he says no. He wants her fully in control of her faculties.
So this is a romantic comedy of sorts centered around a beauty parlor. However any resemblance to Hollywood movies in the same genre (Shampoo (1975) and Hairspray (1988) somehow come to mind) is purely coincidental. Here the salon is brightly and colorfully lit with a tinker bell as the door opens, and the clientele are eclectic to say the least: an exhibitionist who arrives in a raincoat and nothing else; a rich old man lusting after Tautou; a woman with oozing pimples on her...(never mind)...etc.
What makes this work so well is a completely winning performance by Baye, sharp direction by Toni Marshall, and a kind of quirky and blunt realism that eschews all cliche.Read more ›
Angele is very unhappy. She apparently has never been able to make a committment to a man. One man with whom she apparently had an earlier serious relationship appears throughout the film (she runs back to him whenever she is wounded), and it seems she may have once loved him, but somehow she shot him in the face.
Angele uses casual sex to deal with her unhappiness. Her tactics frequently led to bad experiences. One day as she is being dumped by her latest jerk, a young man who looks suspiciously like a young relative of Depardieu approaches her and tells her he has fallen in love with her. The rest of the film tells their story--including an ex-fiancee with a gun.
This is a beautiful film. The story is beautiful. The film contains beautiful shot after shot. I am attracted to color and the celadon greens, mango pinks, celestial blues, and others are fabulous colors are to die for (think Jamaica). The interior shots of the beauty institute, the apartments, the homes are filled with color and ambient lighting.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Plot and acting are fair. Character depth does not exist. The lives of the primary characters send a pathetic chill. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Joe S
Excellent product and service. A really cool heart felt love story. Audrey tatou is gorgeous and brilliant. With good plot humor and depth of characters this is a cool filmPublished 18 months ago by Sean powell
Powerful, entertaining exploration of values of superficial beauty vs. something more substantial. Repetitive nudity makes this awkward/unusable in the classroom.Published on May 2, 2014 by Rick Treece
this was just a waste of time... disappointing, childish, the kind of stuff I cancelled cabel to get away from.Published on December 16, 2013 by PIA
It was ok, but i found myself loosing interest in this movie as i watched it. Wouldn't recommend if you are an Audrey T. fan. She is not the main character.Published on December 29, 2012 by CincySid
I like Nathalie Baye, she is definitely not hollywood pretty nor attractive, but like Audrey Tautou who stars in this film, they are both extremely feminine, unlike Emmanuelle... Read morePublished on October 3, 2007 by kitzler
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