Starring: Benoît Poelvoorde, Isabelle Carré, Lorella Cravotta
Director: Jean-Pierre Améris
Running Time: 80 mins
Romantics Anonymous (Les émotifs anonymes) is a French film about a woman who takes up a job at a local chocolate factory, and develops a strange but loving relationship with her eccentric and timid boss.
This film was, for lack of a better word, very sweet. It’s also quirky, intelligent and realistically emotional, as well as being absolutely hilarious all the way through. It hits a nerve head-on that makes you feel warm and happy inside, and that’s what really makes it such a pleasant watch.
This is yet another brilliant example of the way that rom-coms should be done. You’ve seen all the generic American ones which have a bit of farce and bit of love here and there, but it feels very separated, which completely breaks up the flow and entertainment of the story.
However, here, the comedy is the romance. Creating a love story that’s quite awkward, extremely quirky and simply bizarre is not only a lovely romance to follow with, but it’s also very funny, especially when coupled with the main characters who have the exact same characteristics as the strange love story does.
Another reason that this film is so nice to watch is that it doesn’t over-indulge in the romance. As its two main characters aren’t normally involved in relationships, it has the opportunity to just look at the nicest things about romance, rather than becoming all deep and over-the-top, with characters asking about commitment or god-knows-what.
Nonetheless, it still has a great emotional depth to it. The pair are impossible to dislike, while both of their feelings and desires are perfectly obvious (due to two brilliant central performances and occasional voice-overs), so it’s easy for you to connect with the story and get into it as emotionally as you like, but the best thing is that it’s natural, and not at all forced.
In terms of the comedy, it’s also brilliant. Similar to the type of comedy you see in Amélie, the awkwardness and quirkiness of everything is not only laugh-out-loud funny, but also sweet and heartwarming enough to keep it a relatively low-key and simply pleasant film to watch (not to mention the fact that it’s all set around one of the nicest jobs in the world: making chocolate).
Overall, then, this gets an 8.2, because it was impressively pleasant and warming, not a generic rom-com, and definitely very funny to watch.