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Like a Dirty French Novel

USA 2021
produced by
Mike Cuenca for Blvd. Du Cinema Productions
directed by Mike Cuenca
starring Jennifer Daley, Robby Valls, Amanda Viola, Grant Moninger, Aaron Bustos, Miles Dougal, Dominic Fawcett, Joey Halter, Giovanni Marks, Arko Miro, Samantha Nelson, Julie Pepin, Dan Rojay, Brittany Samson, Claire Woolner, Laura Urgelles, Steven Escot, Mike Cuenca
stories by Mike Cuenca, Ashlee Elfman, Dan Rojay, screenplay by Mike Cuenca, Dan Rojay, music by Carlos Colon, Mike Cuenca

review by
Mike Haberfelner

  • Hue (Robby Valls), who's forced to life with his ex Crystal (Jennifer Daley) due to the pandemic that forces them into their home together, receives calls from a mysterious woman, and he doesn't know whether that ought to turn him on or freak him out ...
  • Two guns for hire are to shoot dead Bugs Dooley (Grant Moninger) - but that they accidently get their hands not on him but his twin brother Forester is the least of their problems ...
  • Esma (Brittany Samson) is so desparate to get her hands on a certain comicbook that she's willing to go to stupic, maybe even dangerous, lengths to get it ...
  • Lane (Amanda Viola) has only recently moved into town, and with the lockdown she hasn't been able to make any friends yet - and then she meets Jake (Aaron Bustos) in the park, and the two hit it off pretty much immediately - which really is just too good to be true, as before long he goes missing, and Lane meets his girlfriend, Crystal (from the opening story) ...
  • Crystal has disappeared, and despite their not so great relationship, Hue quickly gets mighty worried - but then he finds evidence she time and again comes back to their apartment without him knowing - and somehow that leads to him joining three robbers (Claire Woolner, Dan Rojay, Steven Escot) in a painfully underplanned heist ...
  • Rather by chance, Hue has bumped into Jake, who has staged his own disappearance to get away from Crystal, and who seems to be the only one who knows how everything is tied together ...

Like a Dirty French Novel is a pretty cool pastiche of crime story mainstays, but put together in a not exactly linear way that's at times intentionally confusing and where what at first seems to be vignettes of an anthology sowly fall into one another to paint a picture that's more than likely to catch its audience by surprise every few minutes. The result though doesn't feel like a genre movie, more like an absurd, sometimes even surreal collage that's just fascinating to follow, and thanks to a dedicated cast and an atmospheric drectorial effort this has become a very cool, at times trippy and David Lynchean experience that's not to be missed.


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review © by Mike Haberfelner


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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.


Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner


Out now from




On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide


A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD