Sex is Comedy (2002)
Directed and written by Catherine Breillat
Produced by Jean-François Lepetit, António da Cunha Telles
Starring Anne Parillaud, Grégoire Colin, Roxane Mesquida, Ashley Wanninger
Of the many romans a clef Breillat’s realized as novels and features, none are so satisfying or swollen with the feminist iconoclast’s insight as this fictionalized account of the Fat Girl shoot initiated immediately sequent, which exceeds both its subject and most other pictures treating of filmic production. Parillaud enacts a slimmer, sexier Breillat simulacrum with correspondent coiffure and sable ensemble, wrangling her onerous pair of pouting young actors: an insubordinate leading man (Colin, presumably interpreting Libero De Rienzo) opposite frigid Mesquida (as herself, essentially), whose mutual enmity discomfits their director’s undertaking and especially her ambition to actualize an exquisitely unsavory scene of seduction and sodomy. Channeling her directress, the Parisian player exactly exhibits her anxieties, adamance, longanimity, vagaries, prejudices and voracity to bare her unexpurgated temperament and experience to an audience with uncommon, commendable candor. Some of the Fat Girl staff were again employed here, and crew members are often featured in histrionic capacities performing their designated tasks. Nigh so amusing as illuminating, Breillat’s budget masterwork relates the delicate, deviling trials of filmmaking, and the thrilling triumph of a conception committed to film by one of the most pertinacious living auteurs.
Recommended for a double feature paired with Day for Night, A Man Vanishes or Fat Girl.

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