Books & Review
Updated: Aug 14, 2012 02:36 PM EDT

Marjane Satrapi

Directors Paronnaud and Satrapi pose during a photocall of their film "Poulet aux prunes" at the 68th Venice Film Festival.
(Photo : Reuters)

After the surprise success of her first feature, the Oscar-nominated animated film, "Persepolis," author/director Marjane Satrapi has once again teamed up with co-director and cartoonist friend Vincent Paronnaud. "Chicken with Plums," the film adaptation of Satrapi's graphic novel of the same name, is already following a similar path.

Last year, When "Chicken With Plums" debuted at the Venice Film Festival, some critics mentioned it in the same breath as Amélie, the breakout French film of 2001 that made Audrey Tautou a star. Satrapi says she's flattered at the comparison, but her story is a lot darker. It's a parable about what happens when you lose your soulmate.

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Via "A captivating live-action fairytale full of whimsy, humor, magic and despair, about a renowned musician who loses interest in life after the destruction of his favorite violin, the film pays homage to a number of well-known filmmakers and cinematic styles."

Via The Daily Beast: "Unlike Persepolis, it's mostly live-action. Set in 1958 Tehran, violinist Nasser-Ali Khan (Mathieu Amalric) is so overcome with grief after his favorite violin breaks, he takes to his deathbed. Through a series of flashbacks and interactions with the Angel of Death, the pieces of this bittersweet love story fall into place. Satrapi knows about loss. There's another important detail worth mentioning: although the story is set in Iran, the dialogue is all in French. Perhaps that's why watching "Chicken With Plums" feels like sitting at an international banquet."

Via The Huffington Post: "... A fascinating puzzle: at once a mordant comedy, a tale of unrequited love and a story of heart-breaking artistry ... magical and mysterious, a story of love lost - and lost again.

It's all shot in a heightened visual style on obvious soundstages: faux reality revealing real, even extravagant feelings. There's more than a little Scheherazade at work here, peeling away layers of this story to reveal yet another story -- and another piece of the puzzle -- underneath. By the end, you have the full picture, if you've been paying attention.

... You should come away satiated with feeling, the result of a film -- Chicken with Plums -- that is a feast for the soul."

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