A Girl Cut in Two

Director: Claude Chabrol
Year Released: 2007
Rating: 1.5

Pretty, shallow weather girl (Ludivine Sagnier, clothed) gets seduced by two men: a significantly older novelist (François Berléand, gruff) with a wife, an impressive home and a taste for kink and a much younger, much more flamboyant heir to a chemical factory fortune (Benoît Magimel, terrible) - neither suitor likes each other very much, and she bounces between the two, pining for the older but settling for the younger. It is never exactly clear why Sagnier's character - who has a promising career and can pick and choose her mates - would be into either of these two fellows: the writer is older than her mother and looks like Philippe Noiret, the younger bon vivant, with his ridiculous wardrobe, is more like a preening, nail-chewing Momma's boy than a dutiful lover (it doesn't help that Sagnier thinks it's enough to just stand there and look like a model). The movie is belabored and mechanical, with the only real hint of Chabrol's presence being in the third act, where the wealthy are able to pay to make their troubles vanish, with absolutely zero concern for the feelings or reputation of others. It also - for shame! - ends on the most literal note possible.