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Review: A Matter of Taste (2000)

Director: | 90 minutes | , , | Actors: , Jean-Pierre Lorit, , , , , , , Anne-Marie Philipe, Delphine Zingg, David D’Ingeo, , ,

‘Une affaire de goût’ is literally translated ‘a matter of taste’. And taste has multiple meanings in this bizarre film. The strange job that Nicolas is offered revolves around taste, Delamont does everything he can to get Nicolas the same taste as him and the film itself is becoming increasingly unsavory. But let’s start at the beginning …

Loaded with French film awards, this film takes the viewer into the unique world of Delamont at a rapid narrative pace. This man is so rich that he has gathered all kinds of people around him who do ‘chores’ for him. The personal chef is not yet that extreme, but a pre-taster all the more. Certainly the taster that Delamont wants. In the beginning, tasting mainly means checking whether the dishes during business dinners contain no fish or cheese, things to which Delamont is allergic. Pre-tasting soon turns out to mean that Nicolas determines what Delamont business partners eat and plays a major role in Delamont’s financial decisions.

So far it is all not too bad. But what about a ‘course’ in which Nicolas has to get exactly the same taste as his boss? Nicolas picking up a girl, taking it to a hotel room and it turns out that he can’t finish the deed, because he only previewed for Delamont? Nicolas feeling so guilty about his employer’s skiing accident that he does something terrible to himself too? Yes, extreme similarity of taste, as said before. Boss and employee are becoming more and more alike, Nicolas is becoming increasingly estranged from his friends and lover.

The exciting story is interspersed in this French film with the interrogation of the main characters. Right from the start, it is therefore clear that it all ends horribly, but it remains guesswork until the end. How extreme does the bond between boss and employee become? How far does Nicolas go along with Delamont’s wishes?

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