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If you're into Le Cinema, you'll dig this groovy time warp, man. As an American filmmaker in 1969 Paris, Jeremy Davies is crafting a "personal film," a black-and-white diary of his troubled relationship with girlfriend Élodie Bouchez. But his reel job is editor for a futuristic sci-fi extravaganza, à la Barbarella, directed by blow-hard auteur Gérard Depardieu and starring Angela Lindvall (who's pitch perfect as the sexy but vacuous secret agent Dragonfly).
When Depardieu gets his can canned, Davies is promoted to director, and he struggles to find an ending as well as his own identity. In his feature debut, director Roman Coppola brings visual flair with an infectious kitsch quotient and an assured dramatic sensibility (the latter highlighted in a touching scene with Dean Stockwell as Davies' dad). With its inside jokes and homage to late '60s cinema, this spin may have limited audience appeal. But those with a high film-history IQ will definitely want to seek out CQ.