The Last Metro (1980)

By: Henry J. Fromage (Five Beers) –
How many beers do you recommend for this movie?
1 Beer! A Toast! Great Movie!2 Beers! Good Movie!3 Beers! Okay Movie!4 Beers! Mediocre Movie!5 Beers! Awful Movie!6-Pack! Bad movie! Do not be Sober!

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So, this may make me a movie heretic, but my overriding reaction to Francois Truffaut after four films is… “Eh.”

Histoire(s)1

Don’t even get me started on Godard.

Even his staunchest proponents, though, would probably describe The Last Metro as one of his most “Eh” efforts. It’s about a French theater-goer (Catherine Deneuve) simultaneously trying to hide her Jewish husband (Heinz Bennett) from the Nazis and keep her theater running. A brash young actor (Gerard Depardieu) may prove an asset on both fronts.

A Toast

This is a slightly above competently directed, acted, designed, and written film. Everything just sneaks across the line of “good”. If this sounds like damning with faint praise, it is. The Last Metro is good, but with the talent involved it should’ve been more than that.

jean-lous richard last metro

Although, Jean-Louis Richard does play a slimy bastard like a boss.

What really disappoints me is that Truffaut’s direction finally shows some life at the end, when eh rushes the plot forward in time, broadening the scope of the film and introducing the film’s first real humor (no Depardieu’s horndogging doesn’t cut it). If only the whole film could’ve had that energy.

Beer Two

Unfortunately, it doesn’t. A more distinguished critic trying to cover his ass as explain why his head nodded a couple times may call it “meditative”, or “mannered”, but let’s just call a spade a spade and say “boring.”

Beer Three

The acting is also surprisingly erratic for such a “classic”. Deneuve is great as always, and Depardieu does well, but man, Bennett thinks he’s in Dallas or something and many of the supporting characters are similarly over the top.

heiz-bennett-main-review

When Deneuve clocks him with a block of wood, I clapped.

Beer Four

There are lots of other issues I had with the movie, but this wasn’t really five or six beers worth of bad.

–          Why make two characters homosexuals, state your theme is “all intolerance”, then not develop that at all? That’s not a theme, that’s a reference.

–          This is one of the most pandering, underdeveloped love triangles I’ve ever seen. Deneuve basically just decides to cheat on her husband out of the blue, with zero setup or motivation. Sure, it makes for a funny fakeout in the end, but that appears to be the ONLY reason it exists

–          Freeze frame ending? Uggghhhh…

Beer Five

Fuck it, I changed my mind.

Verdict

5Beers1-300x102

There are much worse movies out there, but most of those don’t get called classics. It’ll probably put your kid to sleep if you want, I guess.

 

Drinking Game

Take a Drink: whenever someone says “juif” (Jew)

Take a Drink: every time Depardieu hits on somebody

Take a Drink: whenever the privations of war become evident

Do a Shot: when Daxiat acts like the Scum of the Earth

About Henry J. Fromage

Movieboozer is a humor website and drinking games are intended for entertainment purposes only, please drink responsibly.

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