Coup de Chance Blu-ray Review


  • Director ‏ : ‎ Woody Allen
  • Actors ‏ : ‎ Lou de Laâge, Niels Schneider
  • Subtitles: ‏ : ‎ English
  • Studio ‏ : ‎ MPI Home Video
  • MPAA rating ‏ : ‎ PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
  • Country of Origin ‏ : ‎ USA
  • Number of discs ‏ : ‎ 1
  • Media Format ‏ : ‎ Blu-ray, Subtitled
  • Run time ‏ : ‎ 93 minutes
  • Release date ‏ : ‎ May 21, 2024


        Woody Allen has had a long and complicated career as a filmmaker. There was a time when he was considered one of the most prolific and significant American filmmakers, known and recognized for his romance-heavy comedies, nearly always set in the city of New York. But along with controversies in his personal life in recent decades, Allen also changed his career path by leaving the United States to make movies in Europe. This led to an initial resurgence in his career, though it has been a decade since the filmmaker has received the level of critical praise and attention his films were once afforded. While Coup de Chance won’t do much to change the trajectory of Allen’s career, it will make a nice footnote in his filmography.


        Coup de Chance opens with a seemingly perfect couple, Franny (Lou de Laâge) and Jean (Melvil Poupaud), though Allen doesn’t take long to poke holes in this illusion. Before giving any reasons for infidelity, Fanny has a chance encounter with a former classmate named Alain (Niels Schneider) on the streets of Paris. Alain is a writer living a bohemian lifestyle that contrasts the luxurious life of wealth Fanny has since marrying Jean. It is only after she develops a friendship with Alain that the film begins to show Jean’s shortcomings, both as a possessive husband and as a businessman with criminal practices.


This is also where the film takes on more of an American sensibility, despite being filmed in France with French dialogue and actors. A French film would simply have the affair begin, but Hollywood films more commonly feel the need to justify the morally questionable behavior. Allen is not interested in a slice-of-life character study about a woman making a seemingly destructive life choice, but is instead just setting the film up for the plot twists he is clearly more interested in. By making Jean a villain, it gives the audience something to root against, while bringing in themes that give the title relevance.


Because of his power and wealth, in addition to the illicit methods used to obtain them, Jean’s discovery of the affair drastically changes the tone and direction of the narrative. What begins as a common romantic drama quickly turns darker and more comedic, making it clear why Allen is less concerned with making the characters sympathetic. We aren’t meant to care about these people. We are merely meant to be amused by their folly, even when the stakes become deadly. In other words, Coup de Chance begins as a French film before turning into a film that could have been made by England’s Ealing Studio in their prime, all while retaining the style and tone of a Woody Allen film.


The Blu-ray release of Coup de Chance doesn’t have any extras to speak of, though it does provide the opportunity to see Allen’s latest film in high definition.  


Entertainment Value: /10

Quality of Filmmaking: /10

Historical Significance:  /10

Special Features: /10


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