A successful businessman (Depardieu), married to a beautiful woman (Bouquet) and with two perfect children, surprises himself, not to mention his envious friends, by falling for the pudgy, frankly unattractive secretary in his office (Balasko).
Bertrand Blier, who has always tried to provide something to offend everyone in his surreal, black comedies, delivers his finest outing in years in this parable on the dangers of confusing your stereotypes and taking a mistress as a wife and vice versa.
Depardieu has a field day as the wandering husband, torn between two women for all the wrong reasons and crumbling into indecision with cruel, ironic results. The plot is so unpredictable throughout that its impossible to guess where all the inverted logic will end with ludicrously public trysts, bizarre dinner parties and grotesque emotional outbursts bespattering the story as Blier parlays his invective to the limit.
Bouquet and Balasko are both in fine form as the women whose social expectations are so rudely disrupted, fighting against their odious positions and slowly crossing the ts and dotting the is of Depardieus infantile dilemma. All very French, of course, and although the mordant humour and various outrageous twists look in danger of unravelling at the end, Depardieus indiscretion finally comes home to roost with a satisfying vengeance. Social observation with a sledgehammer.
More outright gall than Gallic charm; a guilty, heady delight.