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Review: Love Crime

A deconstruction of the mystery genre
By PETER KEOUGH  |  October 4, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars

Alain Corneau's icily effective last film is reminiscent of the work of two other recently deceased filmmakers, Claude Chabrol and the Sidney Lumet of Before the Devil Knows You're Dead. Sweet and self-deprecating Isabelle (Ludivine Sagnier) seems out of place in the ruthless world of finance, but she has a formidable role model in her cutthroat boss, Christine (Kristin Scott Thomas). Christine courts Isabelle with gifts and quasi-lesbian overtures as she steals her brilliant ideas and claims them for herself. Until, that is, Isabelle shows a little bit of gumption, and pays dearly for it. Does her consequent humiliation turn Isabelle into a basket case, or does something else lurk beneath her haplessness? Love Crime deconstructs the genre by showing how to put together a mystery in order to deceive and manipulate those who would try to take it apart.

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