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Frank Capra’s classic loses its class
By BRETT MICHEL  |  June 6, 2007
1.5 1.5 Stars

VIDEO: Watch the trailer for Angela-A.

Take a quintessential slice of filmed Americana — It’s a Wonderful Life — and give it a Gallic facelift and you might get a Parisian postcard seductively photographed in silvery black-and-white by Thierry Arbogast. Add script and direction by the cinematographer’s long-time collaborator, Luc Besson, and cherubic old Clarence becomes Angela (or “Angel-A” –– get it?), a heavenly pair of legs barely contained beneath a black micro-skirt and the chain-smoking smile of Dutch model/actress Rie Rasmussen. Whereupon Frank Capra’s classic loses its class. Rather than redeeming a community pillar, Angela’s mission is to help lifelong loser and small-time hood André (Amélie’s Jamel Debbouze) find his inner “six-foot-tall slut” after an abortive suicidal plunge into the Seine. George Bailey may have been plagued by debt, but Capra never turned him into Clarence’s pimp. Could this be Besson’s directing finale, as rumored? Ouais, s’il vous plaît!
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  Topics: Reviews , Frank Capra, Luc Besson, Jamel Debbouze,  More more >
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