Should I cross this street or not? Am I absolutely sure I like melted cheese? Would I take up arms to defend the Cuban health care system? Albert can never make up his mind. He hesitates over restaurant menus, political preferences, you name it. His wit deserts him when he needs it. He thinks before, and after. What will happen if this woman utters the word “mouth” in front of me? Why did I tell her I was in a rush? How do I look in this hat? Between two rounds of local elections, he meets three go-getting young women who take it in turns to shake him up, help him cross the street and get a little closer to himself.
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This character is not me because I can clearly see in him everything that comes from Bruno. To that extent, I’m not improvising. I don’t let myself go. Much of the work was done during the writing process, through long conversations. I think that the directing of film actors has a lot to do with this: all the discussions beforehand, the sets, the rapport with the crew and so on. It’s all part of the directing. The character is, to some extent, the product of all these parameters. [...]
What I liked about Albert was that he allowed me to switch between physical, gestural scenes where the character is a moving figure, and more interior scenes where you think more and don’t really need to act. I felt at ease in the scenes when I was a witness, as though I wasn’t playing the lead part in the film but witnessing each scene we filmed. I didn’t have to do anything, just listen and pay attention...
Denis Podalydès - excerpt from presskit