★★★★ | Me, Myself And Mum
Guillaume has to ‘come out’ to his entire family but that’s no easy task in this quirky French comedy which has a neat twist on this perennial situation. His problem is that they all pronounced that he was ‘gay’ from birth and have treated him as an effeminate camp boy ever since. The trouble is that he now has to risk their disappointment and wrath by revealing the truth. He is actually 100% heterosexual.
Allegedly based on the true story of Guillaume Gallienne the director/writer/star of the movie who was a real mommy’s boy. Born into a wealthy aristocratic family, Guillaume dotes on his mother who seems to do little beyond reading and smoking cigarettes looking very bored. stretched out elegantly dressed on chaise lounges, and who insists on treating him as the daughter she never had. He has perfected all her mannerisms to a tee and sounds so much like her that he often gets mistaken for her when people hear his voice. His father is in total despair about him and so lavishes all his attention on his two older athletic sons who he globe-trots with as they follow their very masculine pursuits whilst leaving Guillaume at home. Or worse still, sending him off to a very rough looking town in Spain to learn flamenco dancing as befitting a girly boy.
Guillaume thinks his mother does know best so he goes along with her firm belief that he is gay and even has a crush on a football jock at the British Boarding School he is banished too. That is until of course he actually realises that he doesn’t really lust after other boys like he should, and it’s quite a shock to even him when he does eventually fall in love.
Gallienne is a much-loved actor/writer and a member of the prestigious Comédie-Française, and this movie is adapted from his own play with which in fact, he uses to start this film with. With his really odd appearance, this 40-year-old actor not only convincingly plays teenage Guillaume BUT also, by channelling Catherine Deneuve, actually plays Maman too. Both are really joyous performances and simply the reason why this oddball comedy works so very well.
There are some wonderfully funny passages thanks to Guillaume allowing us to observe him being humiliated so often. And taking all the abuse that is heaped on him in such good humour. This very unusual take on sexual identity does leave you grinning an awful lot.
Winner of 2 Awards at Cannes Film Festival, this crowd-pleaser of a movie also picked up 3 Cesars (French Oscars) and is now set to hopefully wow Francophile British audiences too.