The first film is solely selected because of the main actress in the movie – the ever enchanting Audrey Tautou, the star of Amelie and numerous other films since then. In Beautiful Lies (De vrais mensonges) (also known as Full Treatment in the US), Audrey plays Émilie, a kooky and slightly domineering hairdresser. When her maintenance man Jean (Sami Bouajila) professes his infatuation and feelings in an anonymous letter, Émilie decides to copy the letter and send it to her mum, Maddy (Nathalie Baye), who is still trying to cling on her failed marriage although her husband left her five years ago. As it appears, Jean worked in UNESCO before, managing 31 staff and fluent in Japanese, Korean, Mandarin and Italian and was fired when he broke down and slapped the Italian ambassador. Although Émilie just wanted to cheer her mum up by sending a copy of the love letter, it backfires when Maddy expects more letters (which then need to be written by Émilie less eloquently). When Jean is entrusted to post one of this anonymous letter by Émilie, he decides to deliver it in person – with disastrous consequences.
The story is about lies and more lies to cover things up – the more one lies to cover the previous one, the murkier the situation. Tautou is a delight as usual, although her character is less adorable than Amélie Poulain. Although the movie sometimes takes a comical and absurd way – almost like a romantic slapstick – it remains enjoyable until the end. Of course the ending is rather predictable, but the route to reach the destination is very windy indeed.
The director, Pierre Salvadori, also worked with Tautou previously in Priceless – also a grittier character for Tautou that is reminiscent of Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Beautiful Lies is an enjoyable movie although it is a borderline chick-flick. The male characters are just the bystanders of the story – those who seem to be unwillingly dragged into the hillarious situations. I shared a laugh or two with the rest of the audience, as I allowed myself to be swept into the story. If you manage to park the logic and the extra-critical view of the movie, you will enjoy the movie!