Love Crime

Alain Corneau with Patrick Mille
Arrow Films

Though it made the official selections of the Los Angeles and Toronto Film Festivals, Love Crime is laden with too many easy clichés – not to say much too drawn out – to warrant fully the descriptions it has earned as “taut thriller” or “modern Film Noir”.

A somewhat redeeming feature is a deft performance by Kristin Scott Thomas as Christine, a nightmare boss who hides behind the better ideas of her assistant while simultaneously playing manipulative, belittling and seductive mind games with her. Really, though, she is too great a talent for a film of this quality and predictability.

It clearly has lofty ambitions, intended as a searing portrait of women’s workplace battles for supremacy, and the extremes to which these can be taken. As executed here, however, it ends up at times appearing to verge on a spoof – like in the over-the-top black and white flashback sequences towards its close – and at others looking like something altogether dodgier, with the flirtation between the two threatening to tip it over into “blue movie” territory.

Grace Henderson