In the House 2012

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(26) IMDb 7.4/10
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Offbeat French drama from director Francois Ozon that explores the relationship between a literature student and the talented pupil whose gift for description he attempts to nurture. Germain (Fabrice Luchini) usually despairs about the quality of the creative writing his pupils produce so when he receives a piece from the previously unremarkable student Claude (Ernst Umhauer) that displays promise he is moved to pledge assistance to the boy. Complicating matters somewhat is the fact that Claude writes about the household of a friend whose mother (Emmanuelle Seigner) he has a crush on and whose mundane lives amuse him. As Germain offers Claude advice on how to improve the dramatic tension within his submissions, the line between fiction and reality begins to blur. A strange power game develops in which Claude and Germain manipulate the family on and off the page, but how will they react when fact and fiction finally collide?

Starring:
Fabrice Luchini, Ernst Umhauer
Rental Formats:
DVD, Blu-ray

Product Details

Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 46 minutes
Starring Fabrice Luchini, Ernst Umhauer, Emmanuelle Seigner, Kristin Scott Thomas, Denis MéNochet, Bastien Ughetto, Jean-Francois Balmer, Yolande Moreau, Catherine Davenier, Vincent Schmitt
Director Francois Ozon
Genres Thriller
Studio ENTERTAINMENT ONE
Rental release 22 July 2013
Main languages French
Subtitles English
Original title Dans La Maison
Discs
  • Feature ages_15_and_over
Runtime 1 hour 46 minutes
Starring Fabrice Luchini, Ernst Umhauer, Emmanuelle Seigner, Kristin Scott Thomas, Denis MéNochet, Bastien Ughetto, Jean-Francois Balmer, Yolande Moreau, Catherine Davenier, Vincent Schmitt
Director Francois Ozon
Genres Thriller
Studio ENTERTAINMENT ONE
Rental release 22 July 2013
Main languages French
Subtitles English

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Wil Andersen TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 25 Sep 2013
Format: DVD
This is a strange and unusual film which I greatly enjoyed but also found slightly unsettling. It is marked by some outstanding performances - particularly from Fabrice Luchini and Ernst Umhauer (astonishingly sophisticated performance from a 16 year old!) - also, it goes without saying, Kristin Scott Thomas. Beautifully photographed, well paced, very entertaining.

I am not going to try to summarize the story. I have seen it described as a hilarious comedy - it has some very funny moments but I did not see it that way. Almost a thriller but not really - almost a fantasy but not that either. It is best approached with very little knowledge of what you are about to see which involves shifting realities. I feel a plot summary would significantly reduce your enjoyment!

As so often with Ozon it is one of a kind - and rewarding viewing. I need to see it again and am glad it is now available on DVD.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jill Dann, FBCS CITP on 15 Mar 2014
Format: DVD
It takes some time for you to realise that the story does not take place in the here and now. You are drawn into the plot and have to navigate your way around the possibilities. Whose mind are you seeing the story through? Who is the arch manipulator? It is very well acted and quite evenly paced. I have never been disappointed by Kristen Scott Thomas' performance - she I so gifted and hard-working. I would trust any script she chose to star in. This is an intriguing and skilful original script.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Laura82 on 17 April 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this film. Really cleverly made. I love the "a suivre..." at the end of each essay. This is the story of a teacher who's pretty dissatisfied with his job as none of his students care about writing or reading and write extremely badly. This is until he stumbles on a piece of writing from Claude.Claude writes extremely well and is extremely cynical about his friend and his family. He says that he loves going to his friend's "normal" house and starts to make fun of the bourgeoisie and middle class parents.
I loved the element of "morally wrong" that the teacher will take a dangerous path to satisfy his curiousity and help his student develop his writing skills.
Of course Claude is a disturbed teenager, and as the story unfolds, a series of event will change the professsor's life forever...A MUST SEE! Also, Kristin Scott Thomas is amazing and her french is perfect!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By P. Micklem on 18 Jan 2014
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Really good plot which keeps twisting. Should watch it on a big screen, espcially for the last shot. Film is not over-long either.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Anthony Wilde on 2 Aug 2013
Format: DVD
I really enjoyed this film. Funny and subtle. It's about a school teacher and his wife who becomes obsessed with the literary outpourings of one of his students. The student himself is obsessed by the middle-class family of one of his friends, and so insinuates himself into their home to write about their lives. He is particularly obsessed with the attractive mother. It is about voyeurism and vicariously feeding off other people's lives. This might almost be a description of art, and particularly film and literature.

The film is really a black comedy and it moves at a satisfying pace. There is never a superfluous scene. It moves toward what is the inevitable tragi-comic conclusion with perfect finesse. I have seen Franois Ozon films before but I was never moved to write a review. It is certainly worth a watch if you like French films and like films which have an artistic flavour but don't take themselves too seriously.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Norwegian on 11 Jun 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The main reason I bought this was Kristin Scott-Thomas and Emmanuelle Seigner, cause then I usually are left with some quality
that last. This film is a real masterpiece, and the only drawback is that I don`t speak french, and has to take my eyes away to
read the english subtitles. But I guess this is one of the films I will watch many times, and learn the lines by memory ;- )
There are many good actors in this film, and they deliver the right atmosphere all the time.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Tommy Dooley TOP 50 REVIEWER on 26 July 2013
Format: DVD
This is quite simply a delightful and engrossing French film. It tells the story of Claude Garcia (Ernst Umhauer), he is a student at Lycee Gustave Flaubert and a bit of a loner. He specialises in maths, but has written an essay for his cynical and dismissive literature teacher, Professor Germain (Fabrice Lucini `The Women on the Sixth Floor'). In it he tells how he had become obsessed with entering a school mate's house, just to be with a `normal' middle class family. His mother having left and him having to care for a father he clearly has little in common with has left him on the periphery of life where he seems to be more of a spectator than a participant.

His essay details how he managed to inveigle his way into the home and what his thoughts and feelings were. He ends his essay with `to be continued'; it is the best piece of creative writing Germain has seen in a long while and he encourages his young charge to continue. This he does with increasing flair and increasing artifice.

What started out as well written reportage quickly becomes a blur of fact and fiction. The resulting release of emotions for all involved soon leads to circumstances spiralling out of control. Kristen Scott-Thomas plays Madame Germain, she runs a modern art gallery that has some truly uninspiring and ludicrous exhibits check out the `penile swastika' to give you a taste. Her job is juxtaposed to her husbands and the increasing obsession he has with the `story' compared with her struggling in the reality of her life.

This is just a sublime film, director Franois Ozon has made a film that is perfectly balanced, billed as a thriller, mystery, it is also a bit of a comedy and a study in obsession and the inter relationships that can happen just by chance in ones life.
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