The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq

NOT AVAILABLE ANYMORE TO STREAM ON NETFLIX. NOW AVAILABLE ON NETFLIX DVDThere are American films centered around kidnapping stories, and then there are French ones, where explosions and car chases are substituted by conversations surrounding literature and cigarettes. 

Playing himself in this wry comedy from director Guillaume Nicloux, controversial French novelist Michel Houellebecq is kidnapped by a group of amateur criminals who enjoy discussing philosophy and poetry. Even though he’s a victim, Michel Houellebecq quickly starts to enjoy the company of his three assailants, to the point where he celebrates his birthday with them around a cake and Jack Daniel’s. 

As the film progresses, the comedic scenes become cleverer and cleverer until you start forgetting the film even started with a kidnapping, and you feel more like you are just watching a French adaptation of Curb your Enthusiasm. 

This farce might be simply too absurd and offbeat for some, but The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq (L’enlèvement de Michel Houellebecq) is a refreshing moment of cinema, as it looks like no other film ever made before.

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