Actor, director, national hero: It’s all in a day’s work for Dany Boon, whose garish 2008 comedy, ‘Welcome to the Sticks’, became France’s biggest box-office hit of all time. And it’s amid further ringing of tills that we receive this crass, laboured follow-up in which Boon attempts a broad farce about supposed racial tensions along the France-Belgium border during the early 1990s. We have Benoît Poelvoorde’s near-psychotic (often amusingly so) Belgian separatist Ruben flashing steel at every damn ‘Camembert’ who attempts to sully his hallowed turf, while Boon’s feckless Frenchman Mathias has to choke down his national pride as he wants to get cosy with Ruben’s sister. It’s a lazy movie: its script loops back to stock name-calling and leaden visual gags and its erratic production design places it anywhere between 1970 and 2015. The bizarre paradox at the heart of Boon’s ultra-populist filmmaking style is that he seems to mock the very people who are swarming to see his movies. C’est bizarre, non?
Friday February 11 2011
Cast and crew
Dany Boon Benoît Poelvoorde Bouli Lanners Olivier Gourmet Julie Bernard