The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-SecPosted: April 11, 2013
Paris, 1911: a newly-hatched pterodactyl is wrecking havoc on the city, and the only person with enough wits and courage to solve the problem is adventuress and novelist Adèle Blanc-Sec, but she’s too busy searching for an ancient Egyptian mummy to save her comatose sister. This is the premise for “The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec”, and when I heard it, I knew I had to check it out immediately.
It’s an entertaining movie, sort of a more French, more fantastical take on Indiana Jones (in fact, I’ve heard it described as a mix between Amélie and Raiders of the Lost Ark). It’s definitely zany, but my problem with it is that it’s not zany enough. When you have bumbling police officers dressing up as lambs to bait a pterodactyl, I’d say it can afford to be pretty silly… and it’s not quite there. The Amélie-esque narration in the beginning is another quibble: in Amélie it works because it sets the tone and style of the whole movie, but here there’s no need for it and we never hear it again after the opening scene anyway.
Still, I enjoyed it enough. It’s beautifully shot, and the CGI is serviceable, if not great. Adèle is a fun, charismatic heroine, with a refreshing independent and no-nonsense attitude (without being annoyingly so.) Also it’s nice to see the romantic subplot being treated just as it is – a subplot, with no knight in shining armor swooping in to save our heroine at the last minute. It makes me want to check out the comic books it’s based on, and hope that the plan to make them into a trilogy will be followed through.