Y’en aura pas de facile (Tough Luck) (Director: Marc André Lavoie): After seeing the amiable Rémy Girard in Incendies last fall, I thought it would be good to see some of his other work. In this comedy, he plays Réjean, a professional biographer who must submit a video introducing himself to a dating website. This framing device lets him spin a number of tales that are meant to tell the story of his life, but it quickly becomes clear that he’s actually making most or all of it up.
There are vignettes about him as a child, relating to his prostitute mother Christine. And about the man who eventually becomes his stepfather, who has been looking for Christine, his lost first love, since high school. And another story about a time in Réjean’s life when he lost his wife and job and hired a hit man to kill him, and then changed his mind. And another story about a man who has a winning lottery ticket stolen. And another about a beautiful woman who disguises herself as a frump, only to have the man of her dreams fall in love with the frump. These are all mildly amusing stories, though none of them are that funny. And worse, they have no relation to the original framing story of Réjean. In fact, there are so many anachronisms that it started to become distracting. Réjean’s future stepfather finds Christine’s photo on a website. Réjean’s younger self and his colleagues carry iPhones. There are numerous dropped threads and additional minor characters and the whole thing just doesn’t add up to much.
Though I’m not familiar with all the actors, I get the impression this was meant to be a showcase for a large number of Québecois stars. The star power might be enough to make local audiences overlook the thinness of the story, but I’m not sure how it will play here in Toronto. An amusing diversion for a few hours, but nothing more.