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Female Agents


Stars: Sophie Marceau, Julie Depardieu, Deborah Francois, Marie Gillain, Moritz Bleibtreu, Maya Sansa, Colin David Reese

Director: Jean-Paul Salome

Few wartime cliches are left unturned in this trite if glossy and mildly entertaining story of four Frenchwomen (and an Italian countess) recruited by a British spymaster to kill a key German officer in 1944.

The action is well staged, especially in an initial warehouse shootout, and a little tension is engendered in the pursuit of the quaary. The dialogue, though, always borders on the risible, and tumbles over the line in the later stages, notably in the face of poor acting from English-speaking supporting players.

Marceau is OK as the leader of the group, but her companions, painted in hackneyed style by the scriptwriters, never convince as dedicated freedom fighters, even if it's true some of them have to be blackmailed into taking part.

Despite some torture scenes, in fact, the film never really gets its hands dirty, and the final banality drops into place when the anti-religion Marceau goes to church to remember fallen comrades.

David Quinlan

France 2007. UK Distributor: Revolver. Fujicolor.
117 minutes. Not widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 1.

Review date: 22 Jun 2008