The Closet

( 2 )

Overview

While there are plenty of stories about gay men who have pretended to be straight for the sake of their careers, this tart comedy from France considers the dilemma of a straight man doing just the opposite. Francois Pignon Daniel Auteuil is an accountant whose personality is bland to the point of being nonexistent; he's been down in the dumps ever since his wife left him two years ago, and he becomes even more depressed when he learns that his boss is planning on firing him after 20 years of loyal service. ...
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Overview

While there are plenty of stories about gay men who have pretended to be straight for the sake of their careers, this tart comedy from France considers the dilemma of a straight man doing just the opposite. Francois Pignon Daniel Auteuil is an accountant whose personality is bland to the point of being nonexistent; he's been down in the dumps ever since his wife left him two years ago, and he becomes even more depressed when he learns that his boss is planning on firing him after 20 years of loyal service. Francois is seriously considering suicide until his next-door neighbor Belone Michel Aumont comes up with a plan to save his career. Belone finds some photos snapped at an especially randy gay nightclub, and using his computer, he pastes Francois' face over that of one of the participants. He sends copies of the doctored picture to several of Francois' co-workers, and soon everyone at the office is convinced the quiet little man has a flamboyant secret life. The firm's CEO, Kopel Jean Rochefort, now has second thoughts about firing Francois, since letting an employee go who is known to be gay could invite a sexual discrimination suit. Meanwhile, the firm's public relations man, Guillaume Thierry Lhermitte, is dealing with Felix Gérard Depardieu, an employee relations executive who is well known as a narrow-minded thug. In order to counter charges that he's a rampant homophobe, Guillaume instructs Felix to make friends with Francois, and soon Felix is spending so much time with Francois while fighting his own internal revulsion that his wife wonders if he's seeing another woman. Le Placard was writer and director Francis Veber's first film after his international hit Le Diner de Cons -- in which the leading character was also named Francois Pignon.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jason Clark
A mostly agreeable farce buoyed by the considerable talents of its stars, Le Placard is best when it is content to be a mild send-up of the modern workplace. The plot is slight and has a nasty streak that is both refreshing and occasionally jarring. The main reason it comes off well at all is the endearing, highly sympathetic lead performance by Daniel Auteuil, who never succumbs to the silliness of the screenplay, instead making his sad-sack accountant a real person. Gérard Depardieu is also effective, nicely sending up his own screen persona and wisely never begging for adorability while playing a mostly unlikable character. The film isn't terribly memorable, but it is sure to be markedly better than the American remake it will most likely receive.
Entertainment Weekly - Lisa Schwarzbaum
The pleasing sight of two reigning French stars flirting in a lunch scene, supported by a cast of equally lustrous comedians...adds to the pleasures of this perfectly built French tickler.
New York Times - Stephen Holden
Francis Veber's giddy social comedy The Closet finds more delicious, chortling fun in the spectacle of obsequious hypocrisy than any movie I've seen in ages.... What's so liberating about The Closet is its refusal to walk on politically correct eggshells. The target of its blunt lusty humor is as much exaggerated political correctness and the panic it can engender as it is bigotry.... The Closet is essentially a classic French farce whose underlying vision of homosexuality isn't all that far removed from La Cage aux Folles.

Francis Veber's giddy social comedy The Closet finds more delicious, chortling fun in the spectacle of obsequious hypocrisy than any movie I've seen in ages.... What's so liberating about The Closet is its refusal to walk on politically correct eggshells. The target of its blunt lusty humor is as much exaggerated political correctness and the panic it can engender as it is bigotry.... The Closet is essentially a classic French farce whose underlying vision of homosexuality isn't all that far removed from La Cage aux Folles.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/5/2002
  • UPC: 786936169096
  • Original Release: 2001
  • Rating:

  • Source: Walt Disney Video
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Daniel Auteuil François Pignon
Gérard Depardieu Felix Santini
Thierry Lhermitte Guillaume
Michèle Laroque Miss Bertrand
Michel Aumont Belone
Jean Rochefort Kopel
Alexandra Van Der Noot Christine
Stanislas Crevillen
Marianne Groves
Technical Credits
Francis Veber Director, Screenwriter
Yves Agostini Cinematographer
Bernard Bats Sound/Sound Designer
Jacqueline Bouchard Costumes/Costume Designer
Philippe Brichetti Production Manager
Vladimir Cosma Score Composer
Jean Gargonne Sound Editor
Francois Groult Sound/Sound Designer
Philippe Houdart Camera Operator
Franck Jouard Casting
Georges Klotz Editor
Patrice Ledoux Producer
Françoise Menidrey Casting
Alain Poiré Producer
Bernard Seitz Asst. Director
Hugues Tissandier Art Director
Luciano Tovoli Cinematographer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Warm and funny

    A politically delicate subject is woven without offense -- or apology --into a warm romantic comedy. The script is intelligent and the actors are superb.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Amusing, funny, and entertaining.

    I haven't seen many foreign films, mostly because they aren't advertised much, if not at all, and because they don't play in all theatres. I am tired of seeing the same actors/actresses make 2 and sometimes even 3 movies in a year. With this in mind I decided that watching a foreign flick would be refreshing. I laughed all through the movie. Even my husband, who I tricked into going to watch this movie because he finds reading subtitles annoying, thought the movie was great. I wish more people knew that other countries also make good movies, and sometimes even better ones.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews