Starring: Vincent Elbaz, Marie-Sophie Ferdane, Pierre Bénézit
Director: Éléonore Pourriat
Running Time: 98 mins
I Am Not An Easy Man (Je ne suis pas un homme facile) is a French film about a charismatic womaniser who wakes up in a world where traditional gender roles have been reversed, and it’s now women who rule the roost.
I really enjoyed this film. While it’s perhaps not as mind-bending as it sets out to be, I Am Not An Easy Man features some really interesting characters thrown into a bizarre situation that strikes up some great laughs and a few moments of powerfully resonant drama.
But first, one thing that surprised me about this film was that it wasn’t quite as strange as I expected it to be. The premise transports a man from a world where men dominate to a world where women dominate, yet in that alternate world, women simply behave like men in the original world.
As a result, this isn’t quite the bizarre, mind-bending look at an alternate society ruled by women that you might expect, which, from an entertainment standpoint is perhaps a bit of a let-down, but from a narrative standpoint actually strikes up some interesting ideas.
The core of the story follows Vincent Elbaz, a charismatic womaniser who suddenly finds himself under the foot of powerful women in this alternate world. However, rather than being dominated by women as he knows them, the women act just like him, giving him a bit of a taste of his own medicine.
Now, this is where I Am Not An Easy Man gets most interesting, as it begins to tackle the idea of whether men’s behaviour in our world is something innate to men, or whether that behaviour is simply what those who dominate society will always employ.
The great thing about the film is that it doesn’t just give you an answer, instead cycling through a variety of captivating scenarios that suggest it could be one or the other. It’s certainly a little odd to see men in typically female scenarios as we know them, but when you think about it for a little bit longer, there’s actually not much of a difference behind their feelings and motivations.
In tandem with some sharp comedy and a pair of brilliantly charismatic performances from Vincent Elbaz and Marie-Sophie Ferdane, I Am Not An Easy Man proves a thoroughly entertaining watch with some thought-provoking ideas, albeit never quite managing to deliver uncanny or mind-bending drama that could have made it even more entertaining. So, that’s why I’m giving the film a 7.5 overall.