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A Comedy Of Power Review

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Claude Chabrol takes an acerbic swipe at bourgeois ethics, as a magistrate whose sudden celebrity enhances her fearsome reputation.

★★★★★

The peerless Claude Chabrol marked his half-century in cinema with this characteristically acerbic swipe at bourgeois ethics, in which Isabelle Huppert excels as a magistrate whose sudden celebrity during the investigation of an oil company enhances her fearsome reputation, while impinging on her personal life.

This is another masterly blend of satire and sociomoral scepticism from Hitchcock’s most devout disciple, which exploits the MacGuffin of a corporate scandal to explore the links between government and big business.

Fascinating stuff, but the subplots involving Huppert’s overshadowed spouse and wastrel nephew don’t quite catch light.

Fascinating stuff, but the subplots don’t quite catch light.