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Une heure de tranquillité (Do Not Disturb)

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Une heure de tranquillité (Do Not Disturb)

Title: Une heure de tranquillité (Do Not Disturb) 

Director: Patrice Leconte

Starring: Christian Clavier, Carole Bouquet, Valerie Bonneton, Stephane De Groodt, Rossy de Palma, Arnaud Henriet, Sebastien Castro.

Director Patrice Leconte adapts Florian Zeller’s hit stage play ‘Une heure de tranquilité’ for the big screen. The film, just like its inspirer, enhances the luxury of solitude: the moment we crave so much for ourselves, that is conquered with incommensurable plight.

Through the traditional French farce, ‘Do Not Disturb’ tells the story of Michel  Leproux who finds a rare vinyl by Niel Youart — Me, Myself and I — and the minute he gets home wants to be left alone to listen to his record. But things do not go according to his plan. His spouse, Nathalie (Carole Bouquet) has something vital to tell him, as does his mistress (Valerie Bonneton). Meanwhile, a downstairs neighbour (Stephane De Groodt) has organised a party for the building and keeps pestering Michel about the plans. Michel’s thirty-year-old son — who is engaged in random activism — has decided to accommodate a Philippine clan in his apartment, above his parents’ house and will ask his father to help him out. Simultaneously at the Leproux household the Spanish housekeeper (Rossy de Palma) constantly barges in Michel’s study, as well as the immigrant worker (Arnaud Henriet) who’s doing a hatchet job on the plumbing system. Therefore the “ hour of peace” — as the French-language title states — Michel craves so much to listen to his ‘50s jazz clarinetist, seems to never come.

In the long run — despite the film runs for only 80 minutes — the controlled chaos on display is strenuous to follow. Although some of the jokes work —when they focus on Michel’s irascibility — the long, boisterous, chaotic day befuddles and debilitates. The stagy narrative, by and large, is overwrought with riddles, cliches and flamboyant acting that become irritating after a while.

Technical: B+

Acting: C+

Story: C

Overall: C+

Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

Une heure de tranquillité, un film de Patrice Leconte, scénario de Florian Zeller, avec Christian Clavier (Michel), Carole Bouquet (Nathalie), Valérie Bonneton  (Elsa), Rossy de Palma (Maria), Stéphane de Groodt (Pavel), Sébastien Castro (Sébastien)

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Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi, is a film critic, culture and foreign affairs reporter, screenwriter, film-maker and visual artist. She studied in a British school in Milan, graduated in Political Sciences, got her Masters in screenwriting and film production and studied at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York and Los Angeles. Chiara’s “Material Puns” use wordplay to weld the title of the painting with the materials placed on canvas, through an ironic reinterpretation of Pop-Art, Dadaism and Ready Made. She exhibited her artwork in Milan, Rome, Venice, London, Oxford, Paris and Manhattan. Chiara works as a reporter for online, print, radio and television and also as a film festival PR/publicist. As a bi-lingual journalist (English and Italian), who is also fluent in French and Spanish, she is a member of the Foreign Press Association in New York, the Women Film Critics Circle in New York, the Italian Association of Journalists in Milan and the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean. Chiara is also a Professor of Phenomenology of Contemporary Arts at IED University in Milan.

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