Parlez-moi de la pluie

The couple Agnès Jaoui, Jean-Pierre Bacri have brilliantly pulled it off again, after The Taste of Others and Look at me. The scriptwriting team of actors (married in real life) seemingly can do no wrong and Agnès Jaoui as director is blessed with perfect pitch.

Florence (Jaoui), is running for office, her boyfriend is thinking of running away, period, to escape her cell phone and her ambition, her sister wonders whether she should be running away from her husband and his tiresome sunny disposition to her own boyfriend. She doesn’t know that he (an amazing acting tour de force by Bacri) is a total loser trying to establish a bond with his teenage son from his estranged wife and helped in pseudo artistic endeavors by a smart and disillusioned Beur—as second-generation North Africans are called in France—adequately played by actor and stand-up comedian Jamel Debbouze.

Manipulation, pretending to be what you’re not, wanting to be elsewhere with someone else, busy-ness, the sad little stories the characters tell themselves and the justifications they find for their existence, should add up to a dismal picture. Instead, Tell Me about the Rain is a bright and charming exploration, with sympathy and understanding for all while never cloying and never indulgent.

Sure, we all have problems, weaknesses, character flaws, but is that so bad? Not according to Jaoui-Bacri and they’re persuasive enough not only to make us like these people but vow to revisit the film.