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Pas Sur La Bouche Review

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A French musical about a group of multigenerational 1920s socialites fretting about their entangled love lives, complete with song and dance numbers.

★★★★★

Farce is extremely hard to do well. Add in musical numbers and foreign language and you're setting yourself a task of the utmost thanklessness.

Alain Resnais' stagey musical is niche to a fault, telling the story of a group of multigenerational 1920s socialites fretting about their entangled love lives, which they further entangle for means of entertainment in their apparently otherwise vacuous existences, with almost no unsung dialogue and lots of to-camera mugging.

Being rich and self-obsessed is unappealing in itself, but singing about being rich and self-obsessed while contorting your eyebrows clownishly is downright irritating.

For all the shallowness of its material the numbers are nevertheless artfully staged and performed enthusiastically by a recognisable cast, and the production design is handsome, but that will still not make it appeal to anyone other than the very pretentious or the very camp.

Artfully staged and enthusiastically performed but unavoidably pretentious.