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A Christmas Tale [DVD] [2008]

3.7 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Catherine Deneuve, Jean-Paul Roussillon, Mathieu Amalric, Anne Consigny, Melvil Poupaud
  • Directors: Arnaud Desplechin
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Drakes Avenue Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Jun. 2009
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001TLWR0U
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,493 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

Arnaud Desplechin comes home for Christmas in his outrageous, daring and emotionally bountiful new movie. Catherine Deneuve is Junon, the family matriarch, who greets the news of her life-threatening illness with calm equanimity. Jean-Paul Roussillon is her wise, tender husband. Desplechin regular Mathieu Amalric is the black sheep, banished from the family by his imperious sister (Anne Consigny, both actors last seen in The Diving Bell and the Butterfly), who arrives with his bemused Jewish girlfriend in tow (Emmanuelle Devos). Melvil Poupaud is the most sensitive of the children, happily married to the divine Chiara Mastroianni.

It's hard to miss with such a cast, but A Christmas Tale is much, much more than a good ensemble comedy. In this midwinter night's dream, unrequited love collides with bitter resentment, nostalgic longing crosses paths with abject fear, and pure hatred gives way to vivacious affection.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I love this movie from the storyline, acting filming and sets. a great tale well told.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Yet another middle class soap opera that the French do with such sophistication. Similar to Those Who Love Me Can Take the Train in which a dysfunctional group of family and friends travel from Paris to Limages to attend a funeral. A Christmas Tale tells the story of a reunion instigated by Junon the matriarch who needs to gather all the family together not just for Christmas but for reasons of her own. Catherine Deneuve, who still has a very commanding presence on screen, plays Junon wife of Abel (Jean-Paul Roussillon), mother of Anne Consigny's Elizebeth a reclusive playwright. The popular French actor Mathieu Amalric is the older son Henri a raging alcoholic who relishes confrontation. While Melvil Poupaud plays the youngest son Ivan who is the most unaffected of the three children. As the family members gather together for Christmas they attempt to reconcile the past and plan the future during which their own private tensions and affections are re-awakened. Terrific performances, as you would expect, from this high profile cast. A deliciously entertaining film. Best French film of 2008?
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By prisrob TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 9 Dec. 2016
Format: DVD
If you are looking for a light, Christmas themed film, this film is not for you. However, this films pulls you in because of all the family machinations, and I felt the need to know what was really going on. The Vuillard family, 2 sons, one daughter,a male cousin, and their significant others and children, are invited for Christmas.

The matriarch of the family, Juno, played by Catherine Deneuve, has a blood disease that will cause her death without a bone marrow transplant. Everyone must be tested to see who could help save her life.The patriarch, Abel played by Jean-Paul Roussillon, who is in the fabric dye business, tries to keep life and limb together, but it is Junon who rules the roost. They had four children, though their oldest, Joseph, died of a rare condition when very young. Elizabeth, the daughter played by Anne Consigny, is very depressed. She does not remember ever being happy. Henri, played by Mathieu Amalric, is the drunk, and the one not liked by anyone, even his mother. Ivan, played by Melvil Poupaud, seems to be the sane and favored one. Elizabeth's teenage son Paul, played by Emile Berling, has just been diagnosed with schizophrenia, and will return to a sanitarium after the holidays. Here they all gather from Dec.22 to Dec. 26.

It turns out Henri, the unfavored one, and Paul, the Schizophrenic, both are good matches for Juno and her need for a bone marrow transplant. Henri and Paul bond over this match. Throughout the Four days many issues arise, and the biggest is the banning of Henri by Elizabeth for six years. From my viewpoint, every adult in this family has some sort of issue, mental issues raise their head most often, or blood dyscrasia. This makes for a film full of vim and vigor, and the more you hang in, the better off you are.

Recommended. prisrob 12-09-16
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Format: DVD
I have never written review for a film before, but this film is worth it, easily for me one of my favourite films of last year.

The first thing to say is this not really a Christmas film as the story happens to unfold at that time of year, the best time for family drama, as when else do you get an entire family under one roof, for more than an afternoon. It is a very worthy addition to the Desplechin already impressive cannon, it is a very funny dark ensemble film with absolutely pitch perfect performances from everyone, especially for me anyway Deneuve, Rossillon and as usual Amalric.

If you want to watch a brillant almost novel like film where you believe and care about the characters than is the film for you...otherwise stick to Four Christmas's.

And this introduced me to a brillant Chrismas song I had not heard before, Otis Reading's Merry Christmas Baby, perfect.
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Format: Amazon Video
I watched this video by myself. The outcome is unexpected. This film is very nice. I really like the props in this movie. It's quite realistic. The plot is tortuous. If I had, I must find someone like the hero.
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Format: Blu-ray
Love or loath it - the BLU RAY of 2008's "A Christmas Tale" (which was beautifully filmed and is transferred to the format with the same top quality) - is only available on a USA Criterion Release - which is REGION-A LOCKED.

So unless your British or European BLU RAY player is chipped to be Multi-Region for Blu Ray (which most aren't - and those that are - cost a lot) - then buying this French movie will be an expensive and painful waste of time and money. It won't work on UK or EURO machines at all...

Unfortunately this is yet another film unavailable to us because of Region Coding...
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Forget the title.Christmas has nothing to do with it.What makes this a great film is the way the tale brings all the characters together so that they all interact brilliantly with one another and we care for them.A tour de force by director Desplechin and co-writer Bordieu.
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Format: DVD
No one really knows why the family are being brought together at Christmas but you do find out eventually - as does the family - but its not before the usually family tenses and strains, like and dislikes are examined comedically and beautifully. Another typically enjoyable French film that would never work in Hollywood......fab soundtrack - it's just perfect for the circling chaos.
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