Hitchcock meets Dahmer? 'Delicatessen' serves up fun

July 30, 1992|By Stephen Hunter | Stephen Hunter,Film Critic

Imagine an episode of "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" shot in sepia and set in the very, very damp future about an ex-clown whose meat-packed bones become the objects of desire for a cannibalistic delicatessen owner while various squads of rubber-clad commandos wage guerrilla warfare in the sewers. If you can imagine that, then you don't have to see "Delicatessen," opening today at the Charles. But if you can't, you'd better go see it.

The movie, take it from me, is a lot more fun to sit through than to describe in a single sentence. It's in a new permutation of European art film, the "pop" film, related to such eccentricities as "The Icicle Thief" and "Toto le Hero," which is self-consciously a "movie" but so aggressively zany and self-parodying and so full of zest and visual icons of European culture that you don't so much but watch it as survive it.

'Delicatessen'

, Starring Dominique Pinon and Marie-Laure Dougnac

Directed by Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro

Released by Miramax

Unrated

***

5/8

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