Priceless is another one of those light comedies the French keep sending us - soufflés that sometimes lose a little air on the way over. There's nothing particularly wrong with it, but there's nothing particularly right with it either. Audrey Tautou, forever emblazoned on our hearts as the soulful waif in Amélie, tries on a new dress this time - actually, a series of slinky numbers, all of which she looks fabulous in. She's playing a gold digger who's looking for a strike along the Cte d'Azur, and you never doubt whether Irène has the moxie to land a prospect, but you do doubt whether she has the ice-cold nerves to close the deal. Which works out in the end, since this gentle farce requires our pretty woman to develop a heart of gold.
Assisting her in that endeavor is Jean, a fancy-hotel bartender in a tux whom Irène mistakes for a player. Moroccan-born Gad Elmaleh, the valet in The Valet, has skin so smooth it's almost transparent, and his eyes are as blue as the Mediterranean Sea in the background. But he's also a skilled comedian who would have done all right during the silent era, working his body like a prop. He's the best thing about Priceless, which never quite hits the vintage tone it's aiming for - swanky and frothy, like Preston Sturges' The Palm Beach Story and Ernst Lubitsch's Trouble in Paradise. Instead, it's closer to that fractured fairy tale, Breakfast at Tiffany's, where Audrey Hepburn's Holly Golightly went lightly indeed. Still, I'd take that Audrey over this one.