Trilogy 2: An Amazing Couple

Trilogy 2: An Amazing Couple


Reviewed by: Keith Hennessey Brown

Feeling ill, Alain Coste (Francois Morel), a successful patents lawyer and businessman, goes to see his doctor. A biopsy is scheduled for the following week. Despite reassurances that it's all regular procedure, Alain worries that he is terminally ill and starts thinking about his will.

Unsure what to say to his Italian wife Cecile (the ever-beautiful Ornella Muti), he tells a lie.

Copy picture

Worried by Alain's behaviour and believing he might be having an affair, Cecile asks her teaching colleague Agnes's husband Pascal, a policeman, if he can see what's up.

But Alain soon notices Pascal and, aware of his wife's strange behaviour, puts two and two together and realises - or believes - he is the target of a conspiracy...

The scenario for the second part of Lucas Belvaux's Trilogy could have been developed in at least two basic directions. Alain is right and we have a thriller - Finally Sunday, perhaps - or he is wrong and we have a classic French farce - Le Diner De Cons, or The Closet, not to mention, of course, Moliere - where a simple misunderstanding escalates to ever-increasing comic effect.

In the event, keen to mix things up - the first film of the Trilogy, On The Run is more like a thriller and the last After Life a hybrid of policier and intimist drama - Belvaux opts to play the film primarily for its humour.

But, while there are many laugh-out-loud moments, one rarely forgets the underlying seriousness of the piece - a modern world of miscommunication, mistrust and isolation - particularly if it is being seen in the light of the other films, as the viewer is aware, for instance, of Pascal and Agnes's situations.

The ambivalent mood recalls another obvious point of reference and influence, namely the late Krysztof Kieslowski. Whether Belvaux likes it or not, his Trilogy is sure to engender comparison with the Three Colours triptych.

Avoiding obvious thematic and colour strategies - the liberty/equality/fraternity and red/white/blue of Kieslowski's films - Belvaux is more adventurous than the Polish director in replaying key scenes from genuinely different perspectives. As a result, while the films of The Trilogy can certainly be enjoyed on their own, the viewer's overall appreciation of them - and scale of Belvaux's vision - grows exponentionally when they are viewed in their totality.

A modern classic in the making?

Reviewed on: 22 Aug 2003
Share this with others on...
Trilogy 2: An Amazing Couple packshot
Second part of Belvaux's trilogy is played mostly for laughs as a man comes to believe his wife is caught up in conspiracy.
Amazon link

Director: Lucas Belvaux

Writer: Lucas Belvaux

Starring: Ornella Muti, François Morel, Dominique Blanc, Gilbert Melki, Lucas Belvaux, Catherine Frot

Year: 2002

Runtime: 97 minutes

BBFC: PG - Parental Guidance

Country: Belgium/France


EIFF 2003

Search database: