Emmanuel Mouret

Emmanuel Mouret

French writer-director Emmanuel Mouret's brand of comedy hinged on an axis of the wry, observational musings of Woody Allen and the physical humor of performers like Buster Keaton and Jacques Tati. Born in Marseille, France, Mouret began starring and directing in his own film projects while a student at La Fémis, the French state film school. He established his intelligent comedy of romantic anxiety with his 1999 project "Promène-toi donc tout nu!" ("Go Naked Then!"), which starred Mouret as a young man who is given an ultimatum: decide within twenty-four hours whether he wants to live with his girlfriend (Marie Piémontèse) or not. His first full-length feature film, "Laissons Lucie faire!" (2000), inserted his antic hero into a string of seaside dalliances in his native Marseille, while Mouret took a smaller role for his frothy "Venus and Fleur" (2004), about a pair of young women - one withdrawn, the other lively - who bond over a desire for the ideal boyfriend. By 2006, Mouret's brand of comedy had crossed the Atlantic for distribution in America, where "Shall We Kiss" (2006), a cautionary tale about the impact of casual romance and sex, enjoyed positive reviews. Mouret continued to mine the confusion generated by physical and emotional encounters in his 2009 film "Please, Please Me!" before taking a more dramatic turn with "Une autre vie" ("The Art of Love," 2013), which begins as a fantasy-romance before deviating into Hitchcockian thriller territory. In 2015, he returned to romantic comedy for the droll "Caprice," with Mouret again as his own leading man, a bumbling teacher whose dream relationship with an actress (Virginie Efira) is upended by a younger performer (Anaïs Demoustier).