Don't Let Me Die on a Sunday (1999) from The Realist

I can't begin to tell you how bad this movie is.

Do you remember Jean-Marc Barr? He's the guy from Luc Besson's "The Big Blue" who ... how shall I put this delicately? Let's just say that, unlike Luca Brazzi, when he sleeps with the fishes, he doesn't go right to sleep, if you catch my drift.
In this particular movie he doesn't have any fish to fuck, but he's in luck - he has a job in a morgue, and corpses are about the same temperature as fish, so ......

Everything goes pretty well for him until he gives a hot beef injection to Elodie Bouchez's corpse. She likes it so much that she comes back to life, but when she does, all of a sudden he's committing a crime with a witness and a victim! Luckily for him, she decides not to press charges. Her dad not only decides not to press charges, but he says, "if I knew he had that power, I would have paid him to do it".


Elodie Bouchez was seen naked in the morgue, then later topless in a sex scene.

There is also some incidental nudity from extras

Dad seems to have mixed feelings, however, because that night he follows Barr and beats the hell out of him in a dark alley, but after beating him to a pulp, he thanks him for bringing his daughter back to life, and repeats that he would have paid him to do it if he knew the results.

Where can the rest of the movie go from there? When you start out with necrophilia and resurrection in the first five minutes, it's not easy to "build" to a climax. Mostly they talk a lot, and make lots of ironic references. Bouchez has a hard time applying for a driver's license, because she's officially dead, and when she returns to the morgue to seek Barr, a Lazarus seeking to meet her Saviour, the other morgue attendants explain their startled expressions by pointing out to her that they don't get that many repeat customers.

Here are some actual lines of dialogue:

"Life is like smoking - a dirty habit, but you can't get rid of it, even though it tastes foul"

"You're very horny for a dead girl"

"Death isn't romantic. It's got nothing on life"

I wish I could tell you it was a comedy, but in fact it's about as funny as one of those Bergman movies where one of the family members is dying. It is not only serious, but completely somber and philosophical. The director apparently thinks that his dialogue is heaven-inspired wisdom that he needs to impart to us.

I was just thinking - how hard is it to get one of those morgue jobs? It must be the very bottom rung of the job ladder. I mean if even if you work for McDonald's, you could fuck up and do great harm. If you're a complete fuck-up, you could turn off the cooler, and people could get sick, even die from tainted meat. But what can happen if you fuck up in the morgue? You can drop the bodies, store 'em wrong, forget about 'em, mislabel 'em, lose 'em. Doesn't matter. They're dead. Anybody can do this job, even the people McDonald's rejects.

Well, except in a French morgue, I guess, where they fuck 'em back to life.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

DVD info from Amazon.

  • Widescreen, about 1.66:1

Scoopy's thoughts:

Too bad about her inability to get social benefits and a driver's license.

She was unfortunate to have been dead in the wrong country. In France, a lack of animation could be quite a social drawback. On the other hand, death in England would be viewed as exemplary behavior, and she probably would have received several promotions based on her excellent co-operative attitude.

Tuna's Thoughts

J'aimerais pas crever un dimanche (1998) stars Élodie Bouchez, who is first seen in a club, with a strobe effect, OD'ing on ecstasy. Cut to her in the morgue, being undressed and stored in a freezer. After all but one of the morgue attendants has gone home, the remaining one showers and shaves, then pulls her out of the freezer to screw her. That is the point when she comes to. Everyone at the morgue fears lawsuits and such, but her father says that if he knew that would bring his daughter back to life, he would have paid the guy to do it. The girl refuses to press charges, and becomes his steady companion for the rest of the film. They leave the hospital, just in time to save a man from jumping off a bridge. The three have sex together.

From here, the film gets a little strange and hard to understand, but, according to the box, is "a psychosexual odyssey into the wildness of private Parisian orgies". I was unable to spot any "orgying", except in the opening scene, but the person who designed the box claims to understand this film, so I will defer to him. Bouchez is seen from all sides including full frontal in the morgue.  The transfer is very weak, and we have the usual subtitles to deal with. The one commentary at IMDB is a little more complimentary than I am:

I was really glad when the film ended. For a film that was supposed to be about sex, it really could have used some, and more frequent nudity would have been a plus.

The Critics Vote

  • This played in exactly one theater, in Greenwich Village, and The NY Times reviewed it. They said "an unstintingly pretentious film. It offers a series of shouting matches about sex, death, and the meaning of life"

The People Vote ...

  • With their votes ... IMDB summary: IMDb voters score it 5.5
  • With their dollars ... This fell a hair short of "Titanic". One theater - four thousand bucks gross - at New York prices, that's about six people.
IMDb guideline: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence, about like three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, about like two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, about like two stars from the critics. Films under five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film, equivalent to about one and a half stars from the critics or less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

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