The Girl From Monaco

Overview

A bodyguard hired to look after a lawyer ends up protecting the man from himself in this breezy comedy from France. Bertrand Beauvois Fabrice Luchini is a successful fiftysomething attorney who's hired to represent Edith Lasalle Stéphane Audran, who has been charged with killing a man with ties to the Russian mafia. Edith's adult son, Louis Gilles Cohen, has been warned that Russian strong-arm men may try to silence his mother and her legal team, so he hires a private security team to protect them and Bertrand ...
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Overview

A bodyguard hired to look after a lawyer ends up protecting the man from himself in this breezy comedy from France. Bertrand Beauvois Fabrice Luchini is a successful fiftysomething attorney who's hired to represent Edith Lasalle Stéphane Audran, who has been charged with killing a man with ties to the Russian mafia. Edith's adult son, Louis Gilles Cohen, has been warned that Russian strong-arm men may try to silence his mother and her legal team, so he hires a private security team to protect them and Bertrand finds he's shadowed at all times by stone-faced Christophe Abadi Roschdy Zem. Bertrand doesn't see the need for Christophe's presence, but when the lawyer has trouble brushing off a former girlfriend he'd rather not see, the bodyguard turns out to be a valuable ally. Bertrand and Christophe strike up a friendship, as the former is increasingly impressed with the latter's street smarts and good judgment, but when Audrey Varela Louise Bourgoin, a gorgeous woman nearly half Bertrand's age, begins throwing herself at him, Christophe has a hard time convincing his client that something is clearly not right. La Fille de Monaco aka The Girl From Monaco received its North American premiere at the 2008 Toronto Film Festival.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Making of the Girl From Monaco
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Nathan Southern
Many viewers will be able to identify individuals from their own personal experiences who remind them of Audrey Louise Bourgoin, the glamorous and gorgeous young waif at the center of Anne Fontaine's seriocomedy The Girl From Monaco. When we first catch a glimpse of her, she's doing a bit as a weather girl on a local newscast, prattling on endlessly, chanting a silly jingle, and twirling around like a half-wit. A past winner from a reality series who fancies herself the next future sensation on television her newest idea involves a reality program about celebrities' pets, she amuses herself with an endless series of male lovers who stream in and out of her life. Her latest conquest is an intelligent and amiable attorney named Bertrand Beauvois Gallic screen vet Fabrice Luchini, who has arrived in Monaco from Paris to defend a socialite Stéphane Audran accused of murdering a Russian. Meanwhile, Bertrand learns that he's inherited a stone-faced bodyguard named Christophe Roschdy Zem to protect him from the Russian's underlings and "secure the perimeter" of each room Bertrand enters. The film pegs Bertrand's character from the opening sequence, when he rhapsodizes unconvincingly about the nature of love and romance amid the arms of a beautiful woman; a deliberate chasm exists between the man's platitudes and the absence of any palpable romance beneath the glamour of the moment. Subsequently, Bertrand responds to a deep kiss with the woman by reasoning that perhaps they should just end the encounter there -- anything else might be a disappointment. Fontaine presents a character somewhat jaded from past romantic disillusionments, and yet not incapable of being seduced into love or wrapped up in the alluring image of romance. Audrey demonstrates a similar degree of half-self-awareness; though unquestionably a bubblehead, she's Machiavellian enough to act shrewdly and calculatingly with men. And in the affluent Bertrand, this user perceives the ability to obtain far more than merely a one-night stand. In other words, Fontaine scores a difficult balance; by not merely keeping the audience outside of Bertrand's infatuation looking in but making each romantic partner half-aware of the nature of the relationship, the writer-director retains the ability to both present it and comment on its real nature. Unfortunately, as intuitive as this is, the film also suffers for it. One wishes it were funnier, sexier. The elements of humor that do exist for the first two thirds of the story feel too understated, too subtle -- more clever and dryly witty than genuinely enjoyable. Although Fontaine's instinct about Bertrand's persistent mopery represents a wise choice for this character, she carries it too far; Bertrand sports a hangdog look throughout that weighs scenes down, and he seems so incapable of loosening up when Audrey beckons him to rip his clothes off and party with her that we wonder what his problem is. The story nevertheless carries a wild card up its sleeve, and almost completely bounces back from the said tonal disappointments with a third-act surprise that has been persistently lingering throughout. To fully reveal this would be unfair, but it involves the backstory of a peripheral character, and a couple of major decisions including one by Bertrand in the final 20 minutes that will permanently alter the destinies of all the major characters. The picture -- which opens with the satirical use of Nat King Cole's glorious "L-O-V-E" on the soundtrack -- may unveil the "love" between Bertrand and Audrey as silly and phony, but it ultimately presents a non-romantic alternative as far more sincere, deep, and genuine. Therein lies the film's intelligence, maturity, and wisdom. If Fontaine had found a way to couple this message with riotous humor in the first half, she could have scaled much greater heights, but this well-crafted and competently acted tale deserves attention and merit for journeying beyond the surface of a silly amour fou and suggesting that real human connection lies elsewhere.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 12/15/2009
  • UPC: 876964002172
  • Original Release: 2007
  • Rating:

  • Source: Magnolia
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Subtitled
  • Sound: Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound
  • Time: 1:34:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 48,805

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Fabrice Luchini Bertrand Beauvais
Roschdy Zem Christophe
Louise Bourgoin Audrey
Stéphane Audran Edith Lasalle
Gilles Cohen Louis Lasalle
Jeanne Balibar Hélène
Alexandre Steiger Alain
Philippe Duclos Inspecteur Taurand
Hélène de Saint Père Carolina
Christophe Vandevelde Tony
Pierre Bourgeon Boulie
Technical Credits
Anne Fontaine Director, Screenwriter
Patrick Blossier Cinematographer
Philippe Carcassonne Producer
Jacques Fieschi Screenwriter
Yves Fournier Production Designer
Benoît Graffin Screenwriter
Jean-Pierre Laforce Sound/Sound Designer
Jean-Claude Laureux Sound/Sound Designer
Catherine Leterrier Costumes/Costume Designer
Maryline Monthieux Editor
Bruno Pesery Producer
Christine Raspillère Production Manager
Philippe Rombi Score Composer
Brigitte Taillandier Sound/Sound Designer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Girl from Monaco
1. Security [6:20]
2. CPA [7:43]
3. Forecast [8:37]
4. Trial [7:41]
5. Encounter [8:35]
6. Pirate Party [5:44]
7. Left Behind [6:24]
8. Energy [8:07]
9. In Love [11:53]
10. Mistake [7:42]
11. Silence [12:49]
12. End Credits [2:31]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- The Girl from Monaco
   Play Movie
   Scene Selection
   Set up
      Audio
         French 5.1 Dolby Digital
         French 2.0 Dolby Digital
      Subtitles
         English
         Spanish
         Subtitles: Off
   Special Features
      Sequence 14: The Making of The Girl From Monaco
      Also From Magnolia Home Entertainment
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