He Loves Me He Loves Me Not
(French: À la folie... pas du tout
) is a 2002 French film directed by Laetitia Colombani and starring Audrey Tautou.
The film follows Angélique, a successful art student who has just won a prestigious scholarship. In between creating her art projects, she has a part-time job at a cafe and house sits for a wealthy vacationing family. Angélique is in love with Loïc, a handsome cardiologist. Loïc is married and his wife is pregnant, but Angélique insists to her friends who know about the affair that Loïc will soon leave his wife for her.
There are twists a-hoy. Best to watch it and enjoy.
This film provides examples of:
- Anger Montage
- Artistic License - Law: A person incarcerated in a mental hospital because of a series of violent crimes is unlikely to ever be released, never mind only a few years after the incidents in question.
- Bait the Dog: Angélique
- Chekhov's Gun: The statuette of the human heart on Loïc's office desk, which Angélique uses to bludgeon him near the end of the film.
- CPR (Clean, Pretty, Reliable): Loïc performs this on Angélique after her attempted suicide.
- Downer Ending
- Driven to Suicide: Halfway through the film, after it becomes clear that Loïc does not plan on leaving his wife, Angélique turns on the gas and lies down on the kitchen floor.
- Dr. Jerk: Loïc. Turns out it's subverted when the perspective is switched.
- Genre Shift
- Hard Head: Averted. At the end of the film, years after having sustained a concussion when Angélique bludgeoned him with the heart statuette, Loïc is seen walking with a cane with some difficulty - evidently there was indeed some kind of brain damage caused by the blow.
- Or he fell awkwardly when she struck him.
- Hospital Hottie: Loïc, so much so that one of his patients repeatedly comes back and demands that he examine her (as she immediately removes her shirt), despite his protests that her heart is fine. It turns out not to be after a scuffle with Angelique exacerbates it, though without the additional stress it would probably have been fine.
- Insanity Defense
- Internal Reveal: The audience finds out what's going on long before Loïc does.
- Mad Love: The Reveal of the movie.
- Meaningful Name: Angélique is french for angelic, which fits with her kind nature. And then we all learned that she was psycho.
- Once More with Clarity: The second half of the film is a protracted one of these.
- One Dialogue, Two Conversations: Loïc and David's confrontation in Loïc's office.
- The Ophelia: Angélique.
- Perspective Flip: Halfway through the film, everything rewinds to the opening shot and we see the whole story again from a different point of view.
- Psychotic Lover: Angelique, that sweet kind girl you have been following? She goes off the deep end and becomes Ax-Crazy.
- Red Herring: For Loïc, but not the audience. He variously suspects a colleague of his and one of his more persistent patients of stalking him.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: Nat King Cole's "L-O-V-E" is used repeatedly throughout the film, and eventually it takes on a rather sinister feeling because of the contexts in which it is heard.
- Stalker Shrine: Angélique has created a very... artistic one. She creates another one from her pills in the asylum.
- Tap on the Head: An unusually realistic example.
- Through the Eyes of Madness: Subtly done. Nothing surreal is seen, but the narration follows Angélique's skewed perspective.
- Twist Ending: More like half-way through.
- Two Act Structure: The rise and fall of Angélique.
- Type Casting: Subverted; Audrey Tautou's character is essentially an Expy of the titular protagonist of Le Fabuleux Destin d'Amélie Poulain, or so it appears at first.
- Unlucky Childhood Friend: David, who clearly loves Angélique but gets blown off (and even used) because she's in love with Loïc.
- Unreliable Narrator: Angelique's perspective makes Loic come across as a jerk and uncaring, if not outright cruel. When perspectives are switched, we find out that's not the case and he's got a lot going wrong for him.