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Rated PG-13 · 2009
Filmmaker Christophe Barratier shovels a mountain of period detail and French political satire into this story (French title: Faubourg 36) of a Parisian neighborhood theater that turns into a workers’ commune in the late 1930s. Even though it’s packed with songs and production numbers, the whole thing feels strangely flat, despite (or maybe because of) the laborious inter-relationships of its three main characters — two stagehands and a ham actor — with a young singer and the local gangster. A grand, well produced, overly long, dated white elephant. With Gérard Jugnot, Clovis Cornillac, Kad Merad, Nora Arnezeder, and Bernard-Pierre Donnadieu (120 min.).

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