The Boston Phoenix
Review from issue: September 14 - 21, 2000

[Boston Film Festival]

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Harry, He's Here to Help

A Phoenix pick

The relationship between the two former childhood friends in Chuck & Buck seems downright nurturing compared to that in this black and icy perversity by French director Dominik Moll. It's obvious from his chance reunion with long-ago classmate Michel (Laurent Lucas) that Harry (Sergi López) needs help. At first pathetic in his attempt to get Michel to remember him, Harry gets downright sinister as he tries to recement a bond that never existed. On the surface, he seems better off than Michel, who's struggling with a wife, three daughters, a dilapidated country home, and a balky station wagon -- the heir to a fortune, Harry tools around in a Mercedes with his girlfriend Plum. But as he quotes by heart a terrible poem Michel published in the school magazine, or blithely buys him a brand new 4x4, or takes even more drastic measures to ease Michel's family tensions, Harry's desperate need strays into the twisted terrain of vintage Claude Chabrol. Although the film starts to fall apart at the same time Harry does, overall Moll has crafted a diabolically funny and subversive thriller. Screens Thursday, September 14 at 7 and 9:45 p.m. and Friday, September 15 at 11:45 a.m. and 2:15 and 4:45 p.m. Director Dominik Moll will appear at Thursday's 7 p.m. screening.

-- Peter Keough

Film Festival Feature Films

Shadow of the Vampire | Songcatcher | Venus Beauty Institute | What's Cooking? | The Broken Hearts Club | Envy | Goya in Bordeaux | Human Resources | Skipped Parts | Amargosa | Henry Hill | Relative Values | The Rising Place | The Contender | Pitch People | Roof to Roof | Four Dogs Playing Poker | Reckless Indifference | Requiem for a Dream | Shadow Magic | About Adam | Charming Billy | Enemies of Laughter | Into the Arms of Strangers | Running on the Sun | A Trial in Prague | Harry, He's Here to Help | A Man is Mostly Water | Seven Girlfriends

Also, Boston Film Festival short films

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