Brigitteand Xavier are 50-something empty nesters. They’re also Normandy cattle breeders, so it’s not surprising that their lives are a little lacking in spice. Xavier (Jean- Pierre Darroussin) is crazy about his cows, but Brigitte (Isabelle Huppert) finds them boring.
Brigitte’s only other interests in life, however, are worrying about her inexplicable eczema and experimenting with tofu burgers. But tofu burgers don’t cut it with a cattle breeder, and Xavier has little time for Brigitte.
The breathtaking Isabelle Huppert looks suitably out of place in a Normandy cow shed. So, when the handsome Stan (Pio Marmai) starts chatting her up at a party, the only question is, why hasn’t a gorgeous younger man rescued her from boredom a good deal sooner than this?
Brigitte follows Stan to Paris, but things don’t go in the clichéd direction we might expect. Director Marc Fitoussi has created a film that transcends the predictable. With a light, subtle touch, he steers Brigitte through a series of amusing scenes and into the arms of the man she really deserves – charming Danish periodontist, Jesper (Michael Nyqvist).
Folies Bergère is a simple story about a woman’s re-discovering the ability to love – not just the men in her life, but life itself. Paris is the perfect setting for such a rekindling, and the film’s cinematographers clearly adore both Huppert and the city. Add to this a similar process of discovery in Xavier’s life (including a sublime scene of the couple’s trampolinist son in action), and you have a rom-com of surprising sweetness, beauty and depth.