The New Girlfriend | Film review - A sly and playful tale of female friendship with a twist

The New Girlfriend Anaïs Demoustier Isild Le Besco.jpg

French director François Ozon (Swimming Pool, Angel) is on typically slippery, teasing form with The New Girlfriend (Une nouvelle amie), a mischievous comedy cum psychological drama loosely based on a short story by English crime writer Ruth Rendell.

The film begins with mousy young wife Claire (Anaïs Demoustier) left bereft following the death of her childhood best friend Laura (Isild Le Besco). At the funeral, she vows to take care of Laura’s grief-stricken husband David (Romain Duris) and infant daughter, only to make a startling discovery when she first visits him at home.

It’s best to watch without knowing any more beforehand save that Demoustier and Duris are on outstanding form and to be prepared for a sly and playful tale of female friendship with a twist.

Certificate 15. Runtime 103 mins. Director François Ozon.

The New Girlfriend is released on DVD by Metrodome.

Jason Best

A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.