2015, France/Czech Republic/Belgium
Director: Xavier Giannoli
Cast: Catherine Frot, André Marcon, Denis Mpunga
Loosely based on the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, ‘Maguerite’ is a French dramedy about a very rich woman who loves singing… in spite of being a horrible singer and not aware of it. Her husband and her loyal butler do everything in their power to protect the delusion she lives in, but incited by a group of profiteers, Marguerite’s desire to perform in public grows stronger.
Before you google this, yes, this movie’s subject is pretty much the same of ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’, starring Meryl Streep and coming out in a few weeks. But ‘Marguerite’ is likely a very different film, totally unafraid to upset its audience with the heartbreakingly tragic aspect of the story. To be honest, there were times watching this movie when I actually felt bad for laughing at this woman (poignantly portrayed by Catherine Frot, who won herself the high recognition of a César Award for her performance), whose passion for music and crave for love are as honest as it gets.
Every character in ‘Marguerite’ is nuanced with strengths and weaknesses, kindness and meanness, just like the movie is constantly shifting from comedy to drama, mixing elements of both genres in a uniquely engaging product enhanced by fantastic sets, costumes and directing.