Cleveland International Film Festival } April 7 – April 18, 2021 } Playhouse Square

THE DINNER GAME

 

Year: 1998
Country: France
Run Time: 90 minutes

THE DINNER GAME is a side-splittingly funny romp that revels in the infamous, at times borderline cruel, French sense of humor. Featuring two over-the-top performances by Thierry Lhermitte and Jacques Villeret, THE DINNER GAME is the story of a group of friends and the bizarre dinner engagement they maintain each week. Every Wednesday, publisher Pierre Brochant (Lhermitte) and his friends meet for supper, adhering to one simple condition: everyone must bring along an "idiot." The one bringing the most idiotic dinner guest wins a prize. Tonight, Brochant is overjoyed, as the prize is most certainly his. A friend has recommended a perfect candidate: Francois Pignon, a lowly accountant for the Finance Ministry with a fantastic collection of matchstick sculptures. Pignon is duped into thining that Brochant wants to publish a coffeetable book featuring his beloved tributes to major world architecture (in matchstick form). Pignon can tell you how many matchsticks he used for each little masterpiece and how much glue. When Brochant throws his back out at the last minute and cannot take Pignon to the dinner he promised, Pignon insists on making his new friend comfortable. In the process, he becomes totally involved in Brochant's life, which is complicated by a mistress and a departing wife. Pignon tries to help with everything, but despite his good intentions, gets it all wrong. He does, however, always speak from the heart. In the style of classic French farce, THE DINNER GAME is loaded with hysterical slapstick moments, absurd comedy and clever dialogue. Villeret as Pignon delivers a performance of phenomenal energy and maic verve. Lhermitte adds just the right amount of slimy charm. In the end, "the idiot" proves to be a moving target and the game must start again.

Screenplay
Francis Veber

Director
Francis Veber

Producer
Alain Poir

Cinematography
Luiciano Tovoli

Editing
Georges Klotz

Principal Cast
Thierry Lhermitte, Jacques Villeret, Fancis Huster, Daniel Pr?vost, Alexandra Vandermoot, Catherine Frot

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