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Tell No One (Ne le dis à personne)
2 reviews

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Movie Details

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Directed By
Guillaume Canet

Written By:
Guillaume Canet, Harlan Coben, Philippe Lefebvre

Kristin Scott Thomas, Nathalie Baye, Jean Rochefort, Marina Hands, Philippe Lefebvre, Guillaume Canet, Brigitte Catillon, Samir Guesmi, Jean-Pierre Lorit, Eric Savin, Eric Naggar, Martine Chevallier, Christian Carion, Arnaud Henriet, Harlan Coben, François Berléand, Sara Martins, François Cluzet, Gilles Lellouche, Florence Thomassin, André Dussollier, Jean-Noël Brouté, Thierry Neuvic, Marie-Josée Croze, Olivier Marchal, Philippe Canet, Danièle Ajoret, Daniel Znyk, Laurent Lafitte, Jean-Christophe Pagnac, Thierry Neuvic, Mikaela Fisher, Christophe Veillon, Anne Marivin, Maxim Nucci, Hugo Sélignac, Ludovic Bergery, Robin Marmisse, Marie Martin, Alexandra Mercouroff, Lola Lefebvre, Brian Lucas, Mamadou Gary, Pierre-Benoist Varoclier, Nicolas Mouchet, Karim Adda, Christophe Rossignon, Jean-Marc Valenti, Pascal Rigot, Marie-Antoinette Canet, Françoise Bertin, Andrée Damant, Jean Maurice Bonneau, Albert Goldberg, Eva Saint-Paul, NiNa, Alain Attal, Arnaud Marciszewer, Jalil Lespert, Dorothée Brière, Joël Dupuch, François Bredon, Brooklyn Beral, Christelle Beral, Saïd Bjaoui, Jérémie Covillault, Raphaël de Crozals

Tell No One (Ne le dis à personne) (2006)
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Movie Review by Jarrod
July 16th, 2008

'Tell No One' is a superb French thriller, with Hitchcockian flourishes, intricately plotted, intelligently written, well-acted, and clearly focused on the mystery of a woman's disappearance, a series of murders, and one man's search for the truth.

It has been a while since I have seen a thriller this thrilling, this smart, this engrossing. Francois Cluzet is Alex, a happily married pediatrician. His wife Margot (Marie-Josee Croze) is abducted and then presumably killed; her body is later discovered by the police, and Alex is the prime suspect. Fast forward eight years, and Alex is still haunted by the event; he grieves for Margot, and is consumed by the fact that her killer was never found, he knows he is innocent, but the cops have yet to produce another likely culprit. Alex receives an e-mail from someone who bears an uncanny resemblance to Margot; this means that Margot must still be alive, and at this point, the film starts to weave its hypnotic spell.

The audience is not overloaded with narrative details until the end, and then it is bombarded with them, in a manner that may leave some feeling puzzled and confused. I am convinced the story operates on rather flawless logic, and does not leave a single loose end or hole, but I am also not sure if I absorbed everything at first viewing. A movie like this invites multiple viewings, its twists are not obvious, and many come as a complete surprise. The influence of Hitchcock should be noted from the premise alone, as Alex is wrongfully accused of murder, and pursued by cops who are not competent enough to figure out who is really responsible for the crimes attributed to him. He must do that himself.

Director Guillaume Canet also borrowed ideas from The Fugitive, but adds his own unique touch to them instead of engaging in simplistic mimicry. He has assembled an impressive ensemble cast, headlined by Cluzet, in a remarkable and riveting performance. It is fascinating how he contains his emotions, and how much he can express without words. Alex is intense and charismatic, and we care about his dilemma and sympathize with him throughout. Croze (from The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) is intoxicating as Margot; her gruff father is played by Andre Dussollier, and he is no friend of Alex's. The handsome Canet (who appeared with Leo DiCaprio in The Beach) carved out a role for himself as the shady Philippe, and veteran Jean Rochefort as Gilbert, Philippe's powerful and wealthy father. Kristin Scott Thomas is a knockout as Helene Perkins, the rich lesbian involved with Alex's sister, Anne (Marina Hands). Nothing is for certain here, every character is capable of deception and betrayal.

I will not divulge any of the film's secrets; I will leave them for you to discover. Anyone who would deliberately spoil the experience is worthy of contempt. 'Tell No One' does not really try anything new, but it is a well-polished and brilliantly constructed genre effort, and that is part of its charm, and why I can recommend it so highly. I must also mention a wonderfully conceived and edited sequence that has Alex running through speeding traffic in Paris, which might be more suitable for an action flick, but does not feel out of place here. It is brief but immensely satisfying, memorable, and exciting.

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