It begins in outer space, where Earth looks just like a small colourful ball; and everything that happens on our dear old planet Earth seems to be as incomprehensible as it is entertaining. What then takes place, is a story that is as tragic as it is banal: a young woman on her way home from the doctor with the information that she is pregnant, is shot dead by a revolver bullet. Is it murder or suicide? Why did Claire, the young woman, have a revolver carelessly tucked away in the glove compartment? And who is the young man who was seen in her car? There were many witnesses to the event which so drastically ended the harmonic tempo of this beautiful Saturday in October. The answer to who Claire and the young man were, is puzzled out through testimonies from the people who were present when she died, and from what happened while she was still alive. She was a journalist who, during a working trip to Normandy, falls in love with the owner of an ammunition factory, Franck; the young man was her brother, Martin, who works at Franck's factory. They had been separated since childhood, and it was a freak of fortune that reunited them for a short period of time - before the shot was fired in the red sports car on a country road in the pittoresque countryside. This story of a crime that is depicted from different perspectives, belongs to a rich cinematic tradition. It brings to mind films such as Kurosawa's Rashomon and Welles' Citizen Kane; but the debutant director, Diane Bertrand (who has earlier made a film about Jeunet's and Carot's Delicatessen) has, in this film, found her own tone and a range of colours that does not lose its sharpness. Her film is as charming and colourful as a pearl necklace, where the pearls represent different perspectives, stylistic breaches and unexpected camera angles - that show anything from an unidentified alien to a cow in the pasture next to the scene of the crime. Dominique Pinon (from Diva, Delicatessen and The City of Lost Children), is seen in an minor part as a policeman who watches porn films; and Elsa Zylberstein, one of the most interesting young actresses in France at the moment (we have seen her in Maurice Pialat's Van Gogh and Martine Dugowson's Mina), plays the leading role as the beautiful and mysterious Claire. A Saturday on Earth is the film that the esteemed film periodical, Cahier du Cinema, hated. See it and judge for yourself! MK

Un samedi sur la terre
Diane Bertrand
98 min
Elsa Zylberstein, Kent, Dominique Pinon
Michel Propper & Georges Benayoun
Diane Bertrand & Guillaume Laurent
Pascal Comelade

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