More in-depth film festival coverage than any other website!
Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
Advertisement

Overall Rating
4

Awesome: 0%
Worth A Look100%
Average: 0%
Pretty Bad: 0%
Total Crap: 0%

1 review, 0 user ratings


Latest Reviews

Hunger Games, The: Mockingjay, Part 1 by Daniel Kelly

Goodbye to Language by Jay Seaver

Mea Culpa by Jay Seaver

Homesman, The by Peter Sobczynski

Hunger Games, The: Mockingjay, Part 1 by Peter Sobczynski

Purge, The: Anarchy by Rob Gonsalves

Raid 2, The by Rob Gonsalves

Fault in Our Stars, The by Rob Gonsalves

Dumb and Dumber To by Brett Gallman

Space Mutiny by Jaycie

subscribe to this feed


Mystery of the Yellow Room, The
[AllPosters.com] Buy posters from this movie
by Greg Muskewitz

"Old-fashioned board games."
4 stars

A remake of, and based on the Gaston Leroux novel by the same name, Bruno Podalydès’ film is a quaintly anachronistic whodunit in 1920s France.

Comparisons have been made to Alain Resnais’ Life Is a Bed of Roses, one of his I haven’t seen, though I do know it’s also set in the Twenties, with its stars Sabine Azéma and Pierre Arditi (salient Resnais staples regardless) as two of the key elements here in Yellow Room. Azéma is nearly murdered after retiring to sleep in the yellow room as her tinkerer father and his assistant work in the adjoining room; the culprit’s impossible escape prompts a thorough investigation led by Arditi, who focuses on Olivier Gourmet, Azéma’s fiancé. A secondary investigation is stirred up by the journalist Rouletabille (Denis Podalydès, Bruno’s brother) and his photographer-sidekick, who believe otherwise. A lot of attention is paid to texture, generating the right feel and look to the film, but at the same time, blending and mixing ahead-of-its-time technology and ingenuity, such as the solar-powered car that runs in silence. (I don’t know if that’s a liberty Podalydès has taken, or if Leroux was prescient.) In the same sense, the structure is so as to highlight the inventiveness in getting to the heart of the mystery: the solution. Even if such becomes slightly disingenuous — tangled, cockeyed, indecipherable without Rouletabille’s key — there is an irresistible ludic and participatory thrill in the movie’s Clue-like hunt. (As a cute gimmick, the press kit unfolds on one side to be in the fashion of a board game.) The disingenuousness continues along that route as Rouletabille and the movie choose to keep the hand of cards under the table and out of view from the viewer, opting instead to augment the deficiency by melting around a layer of humor (a cloud that temporarily stalls said solar-powered car, etc.). The infusion goes deeper than just the surface, because at the heart of the material, there’s a lot to find funny in the way the investigation is run like a chicken with its head chopped off. Formidable cast and production aside, and notwithstanding the pleasantly air-popped fun of getting to the root of the crime, The Mystery of the Yellow Room is much too light and forgettable to share more in common with a Resnais film. With Michael Lonsdale, Julos Beaucarne, Jean-Noël Brouté, and Claude Rich.

[Worth-seeing.]

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=8603&reviewer=172
originally posted: 02/02/04 18:45:33
[printer] printer-friendly format  
OFFICIAL SELECTION: 2004 Palm Springs Film Festival. For more in the 2004 Palm Springs Film Festival series, click here.

IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
Note: Duplicate, 'planted,' or other obviously improper comments
will be deleted at our discretion. So don't bother posting 'em. Thanks!
Your Name:
Your Comments:
Your Location: (state/province/country)
Your Rating:


Discuss this movie in our forum

USA
  N/A (NR)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  N/A




Home Reviews  Articles  Release Dates Coming Soon  DVD  Top 20s Criticwatch  Search
Public Forums  Festival Coverage  Contests About 
eFilmCritic.com: Australia's Largest Movie Review Database.
Privacy Policy | HBS Inc. | |   

All data and site design copyright 1997-2014, HBS Entertainment, Inc.
Search for
reviews features movie title writer/director/cast