Trop Belle pour Toi (Too Beautiful for You) (1989)

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Released 15-Mar-2006

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Comedy Main Menu Audio
Trailer-The Last Metro, Cyrano De Bergerac Collection,
Trailer-Manon Des Sources, Jean De Florette
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 1989
Running Time 87:52
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By Bertrand Blier
Studio
Distributor

Umbrella Entertainment
Starring Gérard Depardieu
Josiane Balasko
Carole Bouquet
Roland Blanche
François Cluzet
Didier Bénureau
Philippe Loffredo
Sylvie Orcier
Myriam Boyer
Flavien Lebarbe
Juana Marques
Denise Chalem
Jean-Louis Cordina
Case Amaray-Transparent-Secure Clip
RPI $29.95 Music Francis Lai
Franz Schubert


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 2.35:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English Smoking Yes
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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Plot Synopsis

Trop Belle Pour Toi (Too Beautiful For You) is an enchanting film directed by the acclaimed Bertrand Blier. Starring Gérard Depardieu, Josiane Balasko and Carole Bouquet the film is a simple tale of a man who has it all; a beautiful wife and two children, a successful business and a lavish life, and desires nothing more until he meets his new secretary, an awfully plain common young woman who turns his life upside down.

The film is incredibly theatrical - many scenes are reflective of a play and Blier certainly turned what should have been a classical genre piece into something more. Gérard Depardieu is fantastic as Bernard Barthélémy, the man at the centre of these two women. We never quite know why he is drawn to the dowdy Colette Chevassu (Josiane Balasko) and he interestingly tells his wife Florence (Carole Bouquet) it is just something he has to get out of his system. We never know if he is just bored or unhappy with his perfect marriage and he feels the urge to sabotage it. Equally Colette Chevassu is married to Pascal (François Cluzet) while having an affair with Bernard.

There is so much ambiguity throughout the narrative but as the film comes to a conclusion it suddenly makes sense with a great final scene. It is a whimsical tale trying to define what beauty truly is - is it skin deep or in the eye of the beholder...or perhaps it doesn’t exist at all. Furthermore Blier has used the epic music of Franz Schubert throughout the film which lends an intensity and sensationalism to the onscreen drama.

I thoroughly enjoyed this film as it is beautifully crafted with excellent performances all round. There is self-awareness to the film as characters speak to the audience and as a result it is named as a romantic comedy on the DVD case although this couldn’t be more wrong as it is a straight melodrama. All in all as Roger Ebert once said, the difference between French and American films is American films are about plot while French films are about people. And Trop Belle Pour Toi (Too Beautiful For You) is just that - it is about our flaws, our inadequacies and our inability to be truly content just being ourselves.

Winner of the Grand Prize of the Jury, Cannes Film Festival 1989.

Winner of 5 César Awards including best film 1990.

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Transfer Quality

Video

Presented in its original aspect ratio of 2.35:1 and 16x9 enhanced this is quite a good transfer with the colours and shadow detail reproduced very well. The feature film is encoded at an average bitrate at 8.29 Mb/s and as a result there is no indication of MPEG compression. Skin tones are very good and there is minimal grain.

It is a very good presentation of a film of its era.

The subtitles are in a small thin yellow text and located on the lower part of the widescreen so they remain unobtrusive. These subtitles are not burned in on the print of the film so they can be turned off by pressing the subtitle button on your remote but strangely there is no selection on the menu to view the film without subtitles.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

The audio is also produced quite well. It is free from errors and remains audible and crisp throughout the course of the film. Being a 2.0 French Dolby Digital track there isn't any surround activity but the soundtrack is practical in regards to the nature of the film which is predominately dialogue based. The few moments occupied by the music of Franz Schubert are also produced effectively although the subwoofer isn’t audible at all.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Trailers

The only extras included are trailers for The Last Metro, Cyrano De Bergerac Collection, Manon Des Sources and Jean De Florette.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

At the time of writing this title is unreleased in R1. On the UK R2 release filmographies for main cast and director are included. On the R2 French DVD an interview with director Bertrand Blier is included presumably without English subtitles. The half-hour interview covers the creation of the film, the script and the distribution of the film. Also included are filmographies for principal cast and director. Therefore the best DVD is the French R2 release although it is unknown if the film or extras have subtitles. If English subtitles are desired the local release or the R2 UK version is recommended.

Summary

Driven by excellent performances and great direction the acclaimed film Trop Belle Pour Toi (Too Beautiful For You) is an engaging film which focuses on the eternal question of what constitutes beauty. The presentation of the film is very good although the R4 DVD itself is basic.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Vanessa Appassamy (Biography)
Friday, April 21, 2006
Review Equipment
DVDDenon DVD-1910, using DVI output
DisplayPanasonic PT-AE 700. Calibrated with THX Optimizer. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with THX Optimizer.
AmplificationYamaha DSP-A595a - 5.1 DTS
Speakers(Front) DB Dynamics Polaris AC688F loudspeakers,(Centre) DB Dynamics Polaris Mk3 Model CC030,(Rear) Polaris Mk3 Model SSD425,(Subwoofer) Jensen JPS12

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