Tell No One

Dir: Guillaume Canet
Star: François Cluzet, Nathalie Baye, Kristin Scott Thomas, Gilles Lellouche

While on a trip to a remote lake, Dr. Alexandre Beck (Cluzet) is knocked unconscious, falling into the water. By the time he comes round, he is in hospital, having been found back out of the water - but his wife, Margot, was brutally murdered. Eight years later, he starts receiving mysterious emails, which suggest that Margot might not be dead. The police have also unearthed two other bodies near the scene of the crime, one of which has a key to a safety-deposit box, containing pictures of his wife, bloody and beaten. As the cops revisit the case, Alexandre becomes the prime suspect, not just in the death of his wife, but another friend - she was shot dead at point-blank range, and the weapon turns up, taped to the back of some furniture in his house. Alerted by his lawyer (Scott Thomas) about his impending arrest, Alexandre goes on the run with the help of Bruno (Lellouche), a local gangster whose child the doctor had saved. Can he find out what's going on and clear his name before being framed for murder?

Man, it's refreshing to see a film where people are smart, rather than making stupid decision necessary to the plot. Alexandre is smart. His lawyer is smart. The bad guys are smart. Heck, even the police are smart, and the results are satisfyingly twisty, yet logical: peoples' behaviour makes sense in terms of their motivations, and this gives the thriller a lot more wallop as a result. At 131 minutes, it could be accused of being slightly over-long, especially in a first-half that drags more than slightly. But once it becomes clear the extent of the trouble in which Beck finds himself, it's completely engrossing, and Cluzet makes for a marvellous hero, intelligent, likeable and kind to children. There's a foot-chase which is particularly impressive, and the final explanation is also entirely satisfying, with one last twist that turns everything on its head. If it ends exectly in the way you probably hoped it would, the journey is a very entertaining one, well worth the effort.

[May 2012]

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