Films made in France move to their own particular beat. All About Them is a film in which its story and situations are very familiar and yet due to the deft touch by the French crew and cast it is a delightful and entertaining film.
Even if you cannot speak French every Anglophone knows the meaning of the term ménage à trois. Jérôme Bonnell’s (Just a Sigh) film uses this familiar threesome plot device as the backbone for his film. Trying to produce a film about three people being in love or a relationship is a tricky thing. Lots of plates to keep up in the air. Bonnell manages this by keep the tone mostly light and spirited. At times naughty, but focuses the main part of its energy on making you chuckle.
Mélodie (Anaïs Demoustier – Bird People, Elles) is a very busy lawyer, who seems to have a very fully life. Somehow she has managed to squeeze in an affair with Charlotte (Sophie Verbeeck – Marussia) over the past few months. This relationship is a difficult one as Charlotte has been dating and living with Micha (Félix Moati – LOL, Livid) for several years. Mélodie and Charlotte manage to hide things because Micha encourages a friendship between the three.
Things become even more complex when late one night as Micha is driving Mélodie home he makes a pass at her. At first she rejects him and then later begins something with him. Mélodie is now truly in the middle of this interesting threesome. Soon the three realize that they are in love with each other. A true love triangle begins.
Bonnell has created an environment in which his actors are completely supported and as a result shine throughout the film. Demoustier has the most complex job and carries it off perfectly. She is challenged with breathing life into a character that at one moment professing her love for her female lover and at the next has to convincingly defend a male pervert in court. Her future in film seems bright. Moati also has some tricky stuff to do having to waver between a man with a broken heart to one that is on the verge of a climax.
The only weak point to this daring film is the length. It is too short. Yes, there is no fat to it; no excess scenes or even dialogue, but the short running time does not allow for very much character development. We really don’t get to know or understand why these three make the choices they do.
Conflicting emotions, three likeable but very different characters and people making out with different members of the trio at the drop of a hat causing some humourous situations crop up often throughout the tightly edited 86 minute film and in the end not many will find three to be a crowd. In the end three ends up being just right.