Seen February 11, 2009: Angel-A directed by Luc Besson, starring Jamel Debbouze and Rie Rasmussen. French language film, viewed with English subtitles.
André (Jamel Debbouze) is a small-time operator of some unspecified sort, living in Paris and owing money in all directions. Despairing of coming up with funds in time to prevent the execution of threats on his life, he decides to exit the scene by jumping off of a bridge. Before he can get underway, he sees a tall blonde woman one pillar over jumping off of the same bridge. Naturally (perhaps having seen a moment from “It’s a Wonderful Life”) he jumps off and saves her. Thus begins his adventure with the angel Angela, or Angel-A (played by Rie Rasmussen).
This is essentially a fairy tale for adults – I suppose a crossover between Besson’s adult fare and his childrens’ stories. It’s a comic film, sometimes darkly so, with a romantic overlay. While the story holds its own, it’s overshadowed by the stunning black-and-white photography of Paris scenery and structures.
Highly recommended to anyone out there.