The Players (18)

Mon Dieu, what a fall from grace is here.

Jean Dujardin, the adored and prize-laden star of The Artist, has followed up his spectacular moment with quite the most abysmal performance – or rather, performances, since he and co-star/writer/director Gilles Lellouche play a number of roles in this portmanteau sex comedy. It's a sequence of supposedly comic vignettes on the theme of male infidelity, and one wonders who could find a single moment in it to laugh at. Or even smile at. The Players (Les Infidèles) gets off to the worst possible start with Dujardin and Lellouche playing a pair of married friends whose delight in "screwing chicks" extends to sharing the same hotel room to do it in. The finale features the pair in Las Vegas having sex with each other. In between, we see them incarnating various desperate shaggeurs – office bores, old swingers, suburban husbands – whose common characteristic turns out to be a staggering lack of charm. Do the French find this stuff funny? Perhaps their more relaxed attitude to extramarital tupping tweaks their funny bone. The only thing that could make this worse would be Bérénice Bejo starring in a remake of Showgirls.

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