Some like it hard (Barbaque)

Some like it hard (Barbaque)
Running time:87 minutes
Director:Fabrice Éboue
Release date:Not communicated
Vincent and Sophie are butchers. Their business, like their couple, is in crisis. But their lives are about to change the day Vincent accidentally kills a militant vegan who has ransacked their store... To get rid of the body, he turns it into a ham that his wife accidentally sells. Never before has ham been so successful! The idea of doing it again could well tickle them...

Mulder's Review

Discovered during the Fantastic Fest festival (virtual edition), the new film co-written and directed by Fabrice Éboué, Some like it hard is a ferocious and jubilant comedy about our consumer society. After two films co-directed with Lionel Steketee and Thomas N'Gijol (Case départ (2011) and Lionel Steketee (Le Crocodile du Botswanga (2014), his first solo film Coexister had already caught our attention. The corrosive humor present in his shows Faites entrer Fabrice Éboué (2010), Fabrice Éboué, levez-vous (2013), Fabrice Éboué, plus rien à perdre (2017) already revealed a gifted comedian knowing how to aim where it hurts and making fun of everything without any taboos or limits of political correctness. A true free electron, Fabrice Eboué has been able to develop a real comic universe and his new film turns out to be a hilarious and striking horrific comedy.

While most French comedies tend to be too mainstream and reveal a real desire not to offend anyone, Fabrice Eboué seems to want to say openly what many people think. Some Like It Hard easily stands out as a comedy as fierce as it is sharp, not hesitating to venture into the realm of gore to offer a story worthy of the descendants of cult comedies like Man Bites Dog.

We discover Vincent (Fabrice Éboué) and Sophie (Marina Foïs), two butchers who are struggling to make their shop profitable. Yet Vincent loves his work as much as he is conscientious in the way he manages his business. He devotes so much time and care to the preparation of the meat that his butcher's shop loses customers, is on the verge of bankruptcy and his wife Sophie is about to leave him.  When his store is vandalized by a group of vegan activists, it seems to be the end of the road for the couple. Later, recognizing one of the activists on a bike, Vincent intentionally knocks him down and is left with a body to dispose of. The job of a butcher is suddenly very convenient to make a body disappear and especially to profit from it. His store becomes famous for its Iranian pork and forces Vincent and Sophie to find a way to meet the growing demand of their customers. 

When discovering this film, one will certainly think of the cinematographic saga of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) mixed with a French-style social comedy, the whole well sprinkled with fierce discourse and a claimed satire on veganism, globalization, consumer society and the problems of the strong competition of chain stores. Once again, Fabrice Éboué's corrosive humor works wonders and his duet with Marina Foïs works wonderfully. While the dead pile up on their course and that Christophe Hondelatte relates it as he would have done in his program Faites entrer l'accusé.

To make an excellent comedy nowadays is almost a miracle, a film like Barbaque allows us to find the charm of cult comedies like Les bronzés and we think that Fabrice Éboué is not only a gifted comedian but above all, with this fourth film, he imposes himself as a seasoned director who handles humor with a rare dexterity. The result is a jubilant comedy that we really need right now to take our minds off things.

Some like it hard
Directed by Fabrice Éboué
Produced by Julien Deris, David Gauquié, Jean-Luc Ormières
Written by Fabrice Éboué, Vincent Solignac
Starring Fabrice Éboué, Marina Foïs, Roby Schinasi , Virginie Hocq, Jean-François Cayrey, Stéphane Soo Mongo
Music by Guillaume Roussel
Cinematography : Thomas Brémond
Edited by Alice Plantin
Production companies : Cinéfrance Studios ; co-produced by Apollo Films, Chez Felix and TF1 Studio
Distributed by Apollo Films (France)
Release date : September 23, 2021 (Fantastic Fest), October 27, 2021 (France)
Running time : 87 minutes

Seen on October 03, 2021 (Fantastic Fest)

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