Frenchie film auteur François Ozon has made a name for himself as both a wonderful director of women, and, as Potiche demonstrated, someone who takes an impish, Buñuel-like pleasure in poking fun at the serious stuff in life. Class, gender and sex are all back under his wry gaze in his new film, In The House, the UK poster for which has landed online.
Ozon's latest takes him away from Potiche's pastel frippery and back to the tougher underbelly of 2003's Swimming Pool, in which nearly everyone involved ignored those 'No Heavy Petting' signs you find around pools to forge a darkly sexual drama.
Like that Charlotte Rampling starrer, In The House packs in as much stifled sexual desire as you shake a funny shaped stick at. Frustrated teacher Germain (Fabrice Luchini) is hooked on the increasingly twisted assignments submitted by star pupil, Claude (Ernst Umhauer), most of which recount his urge to inveigle his way into both a schoolfriend's home and the affections of the kid's mum (Emmanuelle Seigner, natch). But what follows is unlikely to be anything like The Graduate.
Already picking up strong word of mouth on the festival circuit and boasting a solid helping of Kristin Scott Thomas-ness as Germain's put-upon wife, In The House is out on this side of the Channel on March 29.