The Little French Mermaid

One of the better moments of this year's Oscars was Marion Cotillard's win for Best Actress. Her portrayal of chanteuse Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose was flat out first-class and much more deserving than that of favorite Julie Christie. Cotillard's little girl excitement, somewhat broken English and hug to presenter Forest Whitaker made the win a charming one. She's in practically every scene of the movie and disappears behind drastic makeup to create her Piaf, a figure followed closely by tragedy for the entirety of her short life. Although disjointed at times, the movie recounts Piaf's early years as a child living in a bordello, her adolescence spent singing on the streets and her rise to fame in Europe and then the U.S. The film has a slickness that is just Hollywood enough to keep up with the music biopics of late (Ray, Walk the Line) but its French flair provides an intimacy needed to empathize with the calamitous events in her life. The scene where Piaf comes upon an eerie realization and falls apart is absolutely chilling…and fantastic. The film screens at The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, 3200 Darnell St., this Friday through Sunday. For showtimes, visit
Fri., April 18; Sat., April 19; Sun., April 20, 2008


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