Sitcom is a 1998 French surrealistic satire film written and directed by François Ozon. The story documents the moral decline of a once esteemed suburban family, whose descent into degeneracy begins with the purchase of a small white rat.
|Directed by||François Ozon|
|Produced by||Olivier Delbosc
|Written by||François Ozon|
|Starring||Évelyne Dandry, François Marthouret|
|Music by||Éric Neveux|
|Cinematography||Yorick Le Saux|
|Edited by||Dominique Petrot|
|Distributed by||Mars Distribution|
The film's name is a direct reference to American sitcoms, which are noted for their focus on traditional family values and whimsical humour.
The patriarch (François Marthouret) of a seemingly normal nuclear family returns home one day with a small white rat. The animal soon has an adverse effect on his wife (Évelyne Dandry) and children, influencing them into enacting their darkest, most hidden desires.
The son, Nicolas (Adrien de Van) loudly announces his homosexuality and begins throwing wild orgies, the daughter Sophie, (Marina de Van) deliberately flirts with death and practices sadomasochism on her boyfriend (Stéphane Rideau), while the mother seduces her son so she can "cure" him of his orientation. After the father eventually kills and devours the offending rat, he turns into one himself; when his family discover this, they band together and brutally slay him.
- In John Schlesinger's notorious film Midnight Cowboy, a mother and her son's deeply concealed sexual frustrations surface after she produces a small, white rubber mouse.
- Another inspiration could be Pier Paolo Pasolini's novel, and eventual film, Teorema, which depicts the arrival of a mysterious, unnamed stranger in the home of an upper-class Italian family. He systematically seduces every single member of the dysfunctional household, including the mother, who becomes nymphomaniac as a result, the father, the daughter, whom he leaves in a catatonic state, and the son, who subsequently realises his homosexuality and becomes an artist.