CQJanuary 29, 2003
A young filmmaker in 1960s Paris juggles directing a cheesy sci-fi debacle, directing his own personal art film, coping with his crumbling relationship with his girlfriend, and a new-found infatuation with the sci-fi film's starlet.
Release Year: 2001
Rating: 6.2/10 (3,182 voted)
Critic's Score: 56/100
Stars: Jeremy Davies, Angela Lindvall, Élodie Bouchez
Paris, 1969. The filming of a sci-fi movie set in the distant year 2000 is in trouble. The director's obsession with the actress who plays the sexy secret agent Dragonfly has clouded his judgment and the film has no ending. A young American, in Paris to document his life on film with total honesty, is brought in to finish the movie with a bang. This proves to be difficult when the line between his fantasy life and reality becomes blurred, and he finds himself seduced by the charms of Dragonfly.
John Phillip Law
Trailer Voiceover Actor
L.M. Kit Carson
What is Real? What is Art? What is…the End?
MGM [United States] – trailer, synopsis |
Release Date: 29 January 2003
Filming Locations: Luxembourg
Box Office Details
Opening Weekend: $54,942
(27 May 2002)
(8 September 2002)
(Cannes Film Festival)
Did You Know?
Every time Enzo says how many movies he's produced, the number shrinks.
During the chase scene, Dragonfly scrapes and destroys almost all of the rear left-side "winglet" on the white sports car she is driving, yet in the next shot, the winglet is seen to be completely intact and undamaged.
It's a science-fiction film about a futuristic spy named Dragonfly.
Oh, well that's interesting. Your grandmother used to call dragonflies "the devil's darning needles." She told me that they come in the night and stitch up your mouth if you use profanity or were otherwise voluble.
This isn't exactly about that…
Well, maybe you can use it somehow.
You never know when some little overheard story or image can find a place in your work.
A Likable Love Letter to 1960s Eurocinema with Marvy Mellow Music
Paul Ballard (Jeremy Davies), a young film editor living in Paris in 1969,
gets his big directorial break when DRAGONFLY, the sexy futuristic (it's
in 2001!) spy flick he's editing, loses not one but two directors. It
should be noted that Paul's been filching black-and-white film from the
DRAGONFLY production company to make his own rather self-indulgent cinema
verite film at home. Once he's at the helm of the big-budget SF
Paul has a hard time distinguishing between real life and reel life as he
falls in love with the bewitching Valentine (Angela Lindvall), an
activist-turned-actress making her film debut as "Agent Code Name:
Dragonfly." Think of this comedy-drama as a sort of 8½ or DAY FOR NIGHT
the baby boomer generation. It's clear that writer/director Coppola
Ford Coppola's son, big shock 🙂 has great affection for the art of
filmmaking in general and for kooky, cheesy 1960s Eurocinema romps such as
BARBARELLA and DANGER: DIABOLIK in particular (neat in-joke: the leading
of those films, John Philip Law, appears in CQ as Dragonfly's spymaster).
The score by the appropriately-named Mellow captures the mod mood music of
the era delightfully. At times Paul's self-absorption became as grating to
me as it did to his long-suffering girlfriend Marlene (Elodie Bouchez),
the spoofery of filmmaking and the 1960s won me over. The excellent cast
helps a lot, particularly Dean Stockwell's touching turn as Paul's father,
the ever-smooth Billy Zane as Dragonfly's revolutionary adversary/lover
E," and the hilarious performances of Giancarlo Giannini as a Dino
deLaurentiis/Carlo Ponti-esque producer and Jason Schwartzman as the wild
'n' crazy replacement director who gets replaced himself after he breaks
leg in a sports car accident. Don't blink or you'll miss Roman and
Oscar-winning kin Sofia Coppola cameoing as Giannini's mistress. I was
utterly charmed by model Angela Lindvall in her movie debut (art imitating
life — ain't it grand? :-). It's great fun to watch Lindvall switch from
throaty-voiced siren Dragonfly onscreen to sweet, endearing animal lover
Valentine offscreen, plus she's got the most expressive eyebrows since
Eunice Gayson in DR. NO and FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE. (My hubby would like me
to point out that Leonard Nimoy and The Rock are tops in Expressive
Eyebrows, Male Division! 🙂 Do rent the DVD version of CQ so you can also
watch the entire film-within-the-film DRAGONFLY, which is to the CQ DVD
MANT! is to the MATINEE laserdisc (is MANT! on the MATINEE DVD, too? If
not, it oughta be!) — with enjoyable commentary by Lindvall,