Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Lady in the Car with Glasses and a Gun (Joann Sfar, 2015)

First off, how about a round of applause for Freya Mavor's freckles? If you thought Natalya Rudakova's freckles were off the hook in The Transporter 3, you'll love Freya Mavor's freckles in The Lady in the Car with Glasses and a Gun... (Hold your horses, that's the name of the movie? And secondly, do people still say, "off the hook"?)  Yes, that's the name of the movie. As for "off the hook." Fuck these so-called "people." Besides, who still says, "hold your horses"? Talk about lame. Anyway, as of writing this, I have purchased a total of six dresses at my favourite thrift store (it's on Bloor St. and it's the only place I feel comfortable shopping for clothes). Now, given that I'm rather new to buying dresses, I'm still trying to figure what my size is. At first I thought I was in the 9-10 range. Then I started to think I was more of a 7-8 kind of creature (edit: 3-4 seems about right). Either way, deep down I feel as if the garments I'm getting all a tad on the small side. That is until I saw what Freya Mavor wears as Dany Dorémus is this strange retro road movie from France. Even though she mainly wears the same outfit from start to finish, every outfit she does wear is pretty skimpy. And given that Freya and I are both 5' 9", I was thinking that maybe the dresses I'm buying were in fact the correct size. Oh, and it's not that they don't fit, it's that they seem a little short. However, since Freya and I, like I said, are both 5' 9", and we both have great legs, I've decided to conclude it would a crime for us to not wear short dresses and skirts.

As for the quality of this movie. Now, that's a different story all-together. Of course, only someone who is completely dense in the appreciating beautiful women department would deny that Freya Mavor, a Scottish-born actress who is fluent in French, is gorgeous. That being said, the movie itself doesn't quite live up to lofty standards put forth by Miss Mavor (the lady). Neither does it live up to the blue Ford Thunderbird (the car). As for the her trademark glasses. Hmm, I'd say it's a tie. Everything is better than the gun. Seriously, the movie becomes a huge chore to sit through when the gun finally appears on-screen.

Traditionally, the gun is supposed to represent action and danger, but all it does in this movie is elicit yawns and/or groans. For one thing, it's a rifle. Yet it sounds like a pistol. To make matters even more aggravating, they keep referring to it as a shotgun.

Enough about the gun, let's talk about Freya Mavor and that car of hers. Well, it's not really her car. Uh, I'll get to that in a minute. Nevertheless, the pairing of Freya Mavor and that blue Thunderbird is an intoxicating combination. Add the fact that she's wearing glasses and a short light beige dress, and the combination gets even more potent.

The decision to set the film during unspecific time period was also rather ingenious. There's not a single item, phrase uttered or object that betrays what year the film takes place in. It also helped that phones are never used in the film, as nothing dates a movie faster than a phone, especially a mobile phone.

The car is timeless, the clothes are timeless, the John Carpenter-esque soundtrack is kinda of timeless, hell, even the typewriter is timeless, I loved the film's overall vagueness when it came to style. Parts of the film screamed the 1960s, while others had a 1970s vibe. Even the film's protracted title has a certain 1970s exploitation hint to it.

It's too bad the film doesn't really earn its title. I mean, those expecting to see a sleazy revenge movie along the lines of Thriller: They Called Her One-Eye or I Spit On Your Grave are going to be severely disappointed.

While I'll don't normally care about revealing plot points. Since this movie is relatively new, I'll refrain from doing so. I will say this, Freya Mavor, a tall, lanky drink of leggy water, plays Dany Dorémus, the secretary of a business named Michel Caravaille (Benjamin Biolay). After completing some important typing for Michel, Dany is asked to drive her boss, and his wife and daughter to the airport, and then drive the car back to their house.

However, instead of driving it, a blue Thunderbird, to their house, Dany decides to go on a bit of a joy ride and heads toward the sea. Of course, this decision has unintended consequences, as things get more and more stressful for Dany and her long, slender legs.

Unsure as to why all this weird shit is happening to Dany, the audience is left to figure out... No, wait. All the film's mysteries are explained in, what felt like, a twenty minute plot wrap up sequence at the end of the movie. This may sound harsh, but the final twenty minutes are terrible. As the film's unique flavour is basically flushed down the toilet. (Wow, that was harsh.) Well, the film up until this point had a sort of surreal vibe about it that was quite appealing.

Add the fact that it had a sexy chick, a cool car and a some times synthy soundtrack, it had the potential of becoming a future cult classic alongside the likes of The Duke of Burgundy and It Follows. But it doesn't... (Don't forget the killer shopping/dress-up montage.) Oh, yeah. There's a shopping/dress-up montage. Of course, Dany doesn't wear any of the clothes she ends up purchasing (the skimpy beige dress that may or may not be two sizes to small for her is what she wears from start to finish). But still, you gotta love the fact she takes the time to try on clothes. Or you don't. Either way, the movie is... all right, I guess.


  1. I watched this a couple weeks ago. Okay, the movie was lame, but the hot redhead, freckles, dress up scenes and the glasses kept me glued to the screen.

    1. Those parts kept me glued as well... I just wish the film had been, well, less lame.