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Harry, He's Here To Help [2000] [DVD]

Laurent Lucas , Sergi López , Dominik Moll    Suitable for 15 years and over   DVD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Actors: Laurent Lucas, Sergi López, Mathilde Seigner, Sophie Guillemin, Liliane Rovère
  • Directors: Dominik Moll
  • Format: PAL, Widescreen
  • Language: French, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Artificial Eye
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Jun 2001
  • Run Time: 112 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JI0A
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 193,736 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)


Product Description

When Michel (Laurent Lucas) bumps into old school acquaintance Harry (Sergi Lopez) en route to his summer holiday with his young family he thinks nothing of it. But when Harry buys Michel a brand new jeep to replace his broken down car and invites himself to the family's remote holiday home, Michel begins to suspect that all is not as it should be. Before long, he realises that Harry is determined to solve all of Michel's problems, without letting anything get in the way... Harry He's Here to Help is a nail biting and blackly comic thriller that has been compared to the work of Alfred Hitchcock, Patricia Highsmith and the Coen Brothers

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This French film starts with a car ride. Michel (Laurent Lucas) and his wife and three young daughters are driving from Paris to a rundown country cottage they bought and hope to fix up over time. It's hot, the three little girls are fussing and crying and kicking the backs of the seats. Michel is trying to stay calm. His wife is upset as she tries to settle the girls.

The movie ends with another car ride. Michel is driving the family back to Paris. He looks with great love at his wife as she dozes next to him. He looks back at his children with tenderness and contentment as they lie next to each other sound asleep. He looks at the manuscript of a long story he has written.

In between shouldn't happen to anyone.

At a rest stop on the family's drive to the cottage, Michel encounters by chance Harry, (Sergi Lopez) a man who went to school with him, a man he can't remember but Harry remembers him. When Michel was in school he wrote stories, and Harry remembers every word. Harry stands a little too close, shakes hands a little too long, is a little too pleasant. He's traveling with his girlfriend, Plum, but somehow manages to be invited to the cottage for drinks. Michel, when Harry asks, says he works as a teacher in Paris. What does Harry do? He used to live off his father, he says, but "then my father died and now I manage his money."

Harry believes that every problem needs a solution. When Michel's old car breaks down, Harry buys him a new 4x4, far out of proportion as a gift from a friend. Michel and his wife protest, but Harry says "Why complicate life? I wanted to give you a present." Harry wants Michel to be happy and to write, and he wants Michel's friendship. And problems need solutions. Michel's parents at times make Michel unhappy.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing and surprisingly convincing 18 July 2007
By hfffoman TOP 1000 REVIEWER
This is a fascinating exploration of a situation we all experience in real life: someone tries so hard to be helpful that the result is exruciatingly embarrassing. The difference is that in real life the situation returns to normality before things get excessive or out of control.

I will only hint at the story without specifics to avoid spoiling it. The hero, Michel, is struggling to bring up 3 baby girls; his relationships with his wife and parents are suffering, and there are clues that he doesn't have the strength or sense to get his life under control (for example he buys a holiday cottage in need of renovation that seems way beyond him and wastes much of his holiday on a huge diy task that is completely unnecessary (though relevant in other ways). He bumps into an old school acquaintance who tries to sort out his life, first in a friendly way, then becoming gratuitous, pushy and finally insanely obsessive.

The unfolding of events is fascinating as you feel, on the hero's behalf, a mixture of gratitude, bemusement, fear, embarrassment and revulsion at Harry's behaviour. Two features worth watching out for are the irony of the ending and Harry's acting. Right from the first meeting there is something exquisitely, indefinably, not quite right about his carefully groomed enthusiastic smile.

It's worth commenting on two negative points made in other reviews. The one about the film being confusing is inexplicable. The reviewer must have had an off day. This film is very easy to understand although it rewards a bit of thinking to get the most out of it. The other comment was the lack of Harry's motive.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Suspenseful 25 July 2014
By andy
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
There should not be any spoilers in this review.

I found this to be a superbly entertaining film. It has a very good plot, great music, some beautiful scenery, great direction and superb performances from the actors. Actors who in some scenes perform in ways that could have most of us thinking “I would not have done that (or this or the other)” but then we would not have the film that we see on the screen. Things continue to happen that in the real world most of us would not have allowed to happen – but happen they do, and what we get as a result is a film, full of suspense that you can not predict where it is going to take you.

The plot moves along subtly with no obvious stereotyped characters a la Hollywood. What you see really could happen and is all the more watchable because of it.

The director had put together some very talented actors (Laurent Lucas, Sergi Lopez, Mathilde Seigner and Sophie Guillemin) who work extremely well together for the main roles and the supporting cast were also good.

The DVD gives you:

Harry He’s Here To Help
Scene Index
Making Of
Production Notes
Subtitles On/Off
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Michel (Laurent Lucas), a French ESL teacher on holiday with his family, unexpectedly runs into Harry (Sergi Lopez) when the family stops for lunch on the way to their remote country house. Harry recognizes Michel immediately as a former school acquaintance and the author of "The Dagger in the Close of Night," a poem Michel wrote in high school and which Harry has memorized. Michel does not remember Harry at all but invites him to spend the night with the family in the country. The relationship becomes more complex as the stay is extended, and both Michel and Harry begin to change. Suspense builds, leading to a grand climax.
This darkly amusing noir drama is filled with irony. Michel and his wife Claire (Mathilde Seigner), two ordinary people, are the parents of three screaming and bickering little girls, and they never seem to get enough time together, so their invitation to Harry is surprising. They need a vacation, yet they are reluctant to ask Harry and Prune, the stereotyped, clueless blonde (Sophie Guillemin) accompanying him, to leave when they stay too long. Harry is distressed to see that Michel no longer has the leisure or the motivation to write but has no clue that this may be a choice, and he actively encourages Michel to resume writing, even while in the bathroom. Other obvious ironies evolve with ensuing events.
Directed by Dominik Moll, who also wrote the screenplay with Gilles Marchand, the film develops slowly. The accident of Harry's meeting with Michel is so bizarre that the viewer may wonder if the meeting is a set-up, and Harry's motivation for his strange behavior is not completely clear, both problems creating more a sense of puzzlement than suspense.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Not in English
Didn't realize that it wasn't in English so I turned it off have watched it because of that . not into reading sub titles
Published 1 month ago by robyn gai obrien
4.0 out of 5 stars Frequent Nods To Hitchcock
This French film made in 2000 by German-born director Dominik Moll is an atmospheric, psychological thriller, set in rural France, and frequently evoking the style and mood of... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Keith M
3.0 out of 5 stars French Allegory
HARRY, HE'S HERE TO HELP caused a bit of stir when it reached the UK upon release. It isn't Hitchcock, even if it's pretending to be. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Filmfan
4.0 out of 5 stars GREAT
French cinema and storytelling at it finest, especially for all lovers of Hitchcock films. A true thriller in surreal unconventional sense that works on numerous levels.
Published 19 months ago by mr m
5.0 out of 5 stars Keep Your Friends Close...
Not only a riveting French thriller, but one of the best films of all time. Unlike many Hollywood films, you are led by nuances not by obvious, carefully-placed clues. Read more
Published on 22 Jun 2012 by Honrus Publicus
5.0 out of 5 stars Cape Fear and Worse in the Deep French Summer
This film has the feel of Cape Fear, although it's not quite about revenge, its main focus in on obsession. Read more
Published on 17 Nov 2010 by Glen1975
2.0 out of 5 stars Improbable plot, dishy leads!
'Harry He's Here To Help' is not funny, not tense, and by no means probable. It is a far-fetched story of a family unwillingly teaming up with Harry and Prune, an odd couple they... Read more
Published on 25 Jan 2010 by Bart
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly enjoyable!
It was a happy coincidence that I saw this film, late one night on TV. I am writing a thriller and read the synopsis on here. Hoping it might inspire me ...and it did. Read more
Published on 28 Mar 2007 by Mr. T. Hole
4.0 out of 5 stars Weird
This a complicated french film, not made any easier with the subtitles, but with an enthralling plot. Read more
Published on 11 July 2001
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