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neumu
Saturday, September 20, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  The Butterfly cinematronic
  director

Philippe Muyl

cast

Michel Serrault, Claire Bouanich, Nade Dieu, Françoise Michaud, Hélène Hily, Pierre Poirot, Jacky Nercessian

year

2002

rating rating cinematronic
  There was reason to believe that "The Butterfly" would flutter feebly on the insufferable side of the melodrama spectrum. The synopsis promised cliché with a side of treacle: An adorable little girl who feels neglected by her mother stows away with a crotchety old man who is on a quest into the French Alps to find a rare specimen for his butterfly collection and wants no disturbances to undermine his pursuit. In such movies, it's likely that the mismatched duo will develop a caring relationship. But "The Butterfly," written and directed by Philippe Muyl, doesn't take the well-worn route. Filled with humor, conflict, warmth, heartbreak and beauty, it's a joy to watch. Without plausible performances from veteran Michel Serrault and petite novice Claire Bouanich as the elder and the child, "The Butterfly" is grounded. Fortunately, the actors are very good, and very good together. Chemistry aside, Bouanich is unaffected and relatively un-obnoxious as self-possessed yet needy 8-year-old Elsa. As for Serrault, his hysterical characterization of the matronly drag queen in the original version of "La Cage aux Folles" is only one example of his exceptional on-screen skills. His portrayal of lone, lonely entomologist Julien in "The Butterfly" is a beaut, sad and tender, while the rapport between Julien and Elsa is never cloying.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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