Arnaud Desplechin may have become “the French Wes Anderson” in recent years, but he still has a vision of family dynamics that is all his own. I recently watched his 2008 feature, A Christmas Tale, on Sundance Channel’s Free VOD channel (check your local listings) and was blown away yet again by this master. My impulse for watching it this week was the holidays, but it’s really not subject to a season. This is a dark, funny, sad portrait of a modern French family. It just so happens to take place around Christmas. You can also pick up the newly-released Criterion Collection Blu-ray of A Christmas Tale. Here’s the trailer:
P.S. – Should you scoff at the idea of Desplechin as the “French Wes Anderson,” the man himself has cited The Royal Tenenbaums as an inspiration for A Christmas Tale (a link that came to a head when Desplechin programmed Tenenbaums at BAM this past summer).